“George School has it all. You can participate in whatever you are passionate about. For me, it is football and the vocal arts,” said Billy O’Connor ’22.
Billy’s grandmother, Joan O’Grady, worked at George School from 1983 to 2004 and his aunts, Deirdre O’Grady ’87 and Anne O’Grady ’89 attended, so he was always aware of the school.
“When I came to visit, I knew immediately that this was where I wanted to attend high school,” said Billy. “Prior to the start of classes, I attended the new student orientation program and started making friends. Everyone was so friendly, and you feel the sense of community right away,” continued Billy. “I started playing youth football when I was six years old and always enjoyed it, so I knew I wanted to play football in high school.”
“Football is the ultimate team sport. Everyone has their assignment and must do their job if the team is to be successful. It is not like other sports where you can have one or two stand out players who can carry the team. Consequently, very strong bonds are created. We spend a lot of time together which enables us to really get to know each other and we have the shared experience of being a team. Football is physically and mentally demanding which is why I love it so much. It helps me unwind and deal with any problems I might have. Football may seem rough, but it is a game grounded in respect. Respect for your teammates, opponents, and the game. You can win or lose to anyone.”
“Bennett Lichstein ’20 is the footballer I most admire because of his competitive nature,” continued Billy. “He loved to win and hated to lose so he would always encourage us to give it our all and was a great role model for me. Coach Dom has also brought a new feeling to the team and football at George School. He is the most knowledgeable coach I have had. He understands the game as he played it through college and knows how to coach and work with students. It is hard to get that combination in one person. Coach Dom knows what we need as a team to be successful and is motivational and inspiring. Although he has another job elsewhere and young children, he is always here at George School with us,” said Billy.
In addition to football, Billy plays basketball during the winter season and lacrosse in the spring. He enjoys the sciences because he likes the “direct, hands-on approach to solving real world problems” and is excited to be one of the lead tour ambassadors, welcoming prospective students, and their families to campus this year. “Ever since my tour at George School, I knew I wanted to be a tour guide and show families how great the school is,” said Billy.
“I am also part of a new a cappella group. I believe art is a necessary component of your day. It allows you to truly express yourself. Art is powerful—it is a way to convey a message and get a story across. This is why I love George School so much. It provides a myriad of opportunities and you can do all the things you love. If it does not already exist, you can create it. You will never miss out on anything you want to do here.”