(HS)2 Student Life
(HS)2 scholars live and learn on the 350 acre Colorado Rocky Mountain School campus in Carbondale, Colorado, located in the Roaring Fork Valley, just 30 miles from Aspen. The primary goal of the residential experience is to make the dormitories and campus feel warm and welcoming so that all (HS)2 students can call Colorado Rocky Mountain School their “home away from home.” While living on campus means being away from family and what is familiar, it also supplies a great opportunity for students to learn and grow in social and living skills.
Whether attending classes, participating in the outdoor program, or living on campus, students have opportunities to meet and interact with one another and with the adults in the community on many different levels. At (HS)2, students build strong relationships with the faculty and staff as well as with their peers. Students get to know the adults in the community not only as their teachers but also as their mentors. Living, working, and playing together promotes a family atmosphere for dorm parents and residents, and students become more independent by learning to be responsible and accountable for their actions.
Scholars are housed in dormitories, separated by gender, and each dorm is staffed by (HS)2 Resident Assistants. Typically, two students share a dorm room, and each hallway has a shared modern bathroom and shower facility. Our dorms are energy efficient, and have expansive windows that allow abundant natural light. The common area anchors each dorm with a well-appointed sitting area and kitchen amenities. Students at (HS)2 love their living spaces and make these dorms their home. Outside the dorms, students are greeted each day by spectacular views of Mount Sopris, river frontage, and open space.
With a vision to provide healthy, nutritious, sustainable meals to the students, similar to the types of meals she would provide for her own family, CRMS Director of Food Services, Fiona O’Donnell Pax, focuses on eliminating processed and unnatural foods and on using locally grown and organic foods whenever possible, with much of the produce coming from our two-acre campus garden.
Breakfast typically includes homemade granola, organic cereals, and a hot meal of eggs, pancakes, and whole-grain toast. Lunch includes a main entrée, which can range from a hot sandwich to pasta to a stew, plus a full salad and sandwich bar always featuring in-season fresh fruit. Dinner always has appetizers, a fresh salad bar, a meat and vegetarian entrée, two fresh vegetables (never canned or frozen), and a homemade dessert.
Extra Curricular Activities
Students will participate in afternoon activities available on the CRMS campus. Depending upon available staffing and student interest, possible options include:
• Rock Climbing
• Team sports
During the weekends, the group will explore the natural resources of the Roaring Fork River Valley, enjoying hiking, horseback riding, and white-water rafting, and also experience other regional attractions. Given the intense academic focus of the (HS)2 Program, the only time students will have significant blocks of free time is Sunday.
Just for Fun
Simply put, life at (HS)2 is fun! Students and teachers alike are passionate about the program and the community—everyone just enjoys being here. While it is challenging to fully capture the culture of (HS)2 in words, the activities outlined below embody many of the FUN aspects of life at (HS)2.
All-School Meeting occurs once each week and is a time when the entire school community gathers in the iconic Barn building. Each meeting begins with a student musical or spoken word performance, followed by designated times for accountability and community “thank yous,” along with any relevant announcements. All-School Meeting is a time that can be humorous, reflective, informational, and thoughtful, all in one space. Each meeting ends with the presentation of the “Braj Award,” which recognizes an outstanding member of the community, chosen by the previous week’s winner.
Coffee House is an all-school "talent show" where any (HS)2 student has the opportunity to perform. Although most performances are music oriented, all varieties of performances are welcome. Following in the steps of Coffee House performances at CRMS, Coffee House has become a wonderful (HS)2 tradition. It provides a unique opportunity for students to share their talent with the (HS)2 community in a tremendously fun and supportive environment.