Private Independent school from PK through 12th grade.

Hammond News


  • November

    Grandparents Day 2019

    An annual favorite, Grandparents Day is one of the most highly anticipated days of the year ... for over 850 Skyhawks and their Grandparents.  This year was no different!  Over 700 enthusiastic Grandparents arrived to visit equally as enthusiastic Hammond students of all ages and grades.  These special guests were treated to a morning of music by the Lower School, Middle School Choir, and our Select Ensemble.  In addition to welcomes by Headmaster Chris Angel and Grandparents Committee Chair Sally McWilliams, Student Body President Alex Huntley explained what makes Hammond such a special place.  Following student-guided campus tours, Grandparents and students were treated to a barbeque lunch, compliments of Grandparent Jimmy Stevenson '71.  It was a grand day to be a Skyhawk, grander still to be a Skyhawk Grandparent.

    View the gallery.
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  • October

    Middle School Math Scores at SCISA Competition

    The Hammond Math Team competed in the SCISA Middle School Math Meet on October 23. Four Hammond mathletes placed in the top ten. Team leader Ranti Olatosi took ninth place, Wood Moore and Saabyr Beyg tied for 6th place, and Cole Glenn took 4th place out of about 275 competitors. Hammond Team 1 took second place, and Hammond Team 2 took seventh place out of 44 teams. The mathletes that represented Hammond were Saabyr Beyg, Graham Friesner, Cole Glenn, Zachary Head, Zamam Lone, Martin Loreal, Wood Moore, Ranti Olatosi, Logan Rivers, Christina Rizos, and Dhruv Tangri. 

    Congratulations to these Skyhawk Mathletes!
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  • 2019 CUM LAUDE Induction

    Hammond inducted six students into The Herbert B. Barks Chapter of The Cum Laude Society, the most prestigious academic honor society to which a high school student can belong.  Founded over 100 years ago, The Cum Laude Society is modeled on Phi Beta Kappa, and recognizes true scholarship within secondary schools.  The tenets upon which The Cum Laude Society were established can be found in the Latin words, Areté, Diké, Timé … excellence, justice, honor.  These words succinctly describe the Hammond experience from the earliest grades to graduating seniors.  The same can be said for the many alumni who have left Hammond to successfully pursue their chosen profession.
    One such alum is Rem Reynolds ’92, founding partner of I&CO, who was this year’s keynote speaker.  Not only did Reynolds share the circuitous path that lead him to his current position, but he impressed upon students the value of reading. He explained that in addition to helping develop intellect, reading leads to innate curiosity, the ability to discern, and with that comes empathy.
    The Herbert B. Barks Chapter was the second chapter founded in South Carolina. Congratulations to our 2019 inductees:  Mary Fleming Finlay, Federica Hall, Hannah Hedley, Tobi Ogunfowora, Jo Stephens, and Hannah Wassermann.
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    Homecoming 2019 brought out the school spirit in Skyhawks of every age, grade, and graduating class.  We painted the town red and rolled out the red carpet for returning alums!  Following a day of festivities that included football players and cheerleaders assisting with carpool, a special Friday in the Kiva, food trucks for our Upper School students, and field games for Middle Schoolers.  The day's culminating activity was an all-school pep rally that found us all on our feet cheering for our favorite colors ... red, white, and blue.  

    A pre-game Alumni Homecoming Party at the home of Chris and Peggy Angel provided the perfect opportunity for alums to reconnect and reminisce before the Varsity Skyhawks took on the Laurence Manning Wildcats.  At halftime, Wade Oliver and Ellie Rickenmann were crowned Homecoming King and Queen.  Ellie follows in the footsteps of her mother, Laura Herlong Rickenmann '89, who also wore the crown.

    Distinguished Alumni and Young Alumni awards were also presented at halftime to Kelsey Chow '09 and Bill Owen '88.

    After an impressive 49-7 win over Laurence Manning, the Skyhawk Nation celebrated another red letter day!

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  • Capcom Go! Premiers on SciDome

    One of the most remarkable features of Hammond's Innovation Center is the SciDome planetarium, designed to provide students of all grades with curricular opportunities in an interactive, fulldome classroom. The SciDome brings real time space and earth science, among other programs designed for young learners, into the dome’s unique teaching environment. 
    This month, in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing, the SciDome will play host to several screenings of Capcom Go!  Designed for planetarium screens, Capcom Go! explores the efforts of the nearly 400,000 people who worked over ten years towards this space goal.  We'll step back in time to July 20th 1969, when 600 million people around the world gathered to witness this historic moment of human achievement broadcast live from the Moon.  
    Join us as we celebrate one small step for man, and one giant leap for mankind. 
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  • September

    Professional Development and Design Thinking

    Fall Professional Development found faculty and staff alike rotating through morning sesions including first aid and CPR, and culminating in an afternoon of learning, collaborating, designing, creating, and competing–all of the things Skyhawks of all ages do every day.  An exercise in design-thinking involved groups of faculty and staff members from varying departments and divisions grouped to solve a problem and use design fundamentals, along with limited resources, to create either a tetrahedral kite or pinewood derby-style car.  Following completion of the projects, groups competed against one another to claim a winning group  for the longest and highest flying kite and the fastest derby car.  
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  • WONDER LAB Opens for Young Learners

    August 28 found the Lower School Full Dream Ahead as the Wonder Lab officially opened for students and an open house was held that included visitors of all ages.  The flexible classroom space provides our youngest learners with opportunities to collaborate, connect, imagine, and invent, and helps connect the Lower School curriculum to that of the Middle and Upper Schools, mirroring much of what occurs in the Innovation Center.  A Lower School assembly kicked off the opening followed by a ribbon cutting, and opportunities for students to visit one of several project centers for hands-on exploration.  The Wonder Lab includes a launch pad for instruction, a collaboration room for planning, a wet room, flexible workspaces, a woodworking station, and an open area for exploration and design.  We can't wait to see what these big-thinking little people come up with in this dream of a space!  View the photo gallery.
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  • August

    Andy North, New Middle School Head

    Please join us in rolling out the red carpet for new Head of Middle School, Andy North.  Andy and his wife, Becca, are the parents of two new Skyhawks: a daughter, Dansby (4th), and a son, Miller (K).  We are delighted to welcome them to our school community and are excited about the many ways they will contribute to life at Hammond.
    A Florence, South Carolina native, Andy is no stranger to independent schools.  He is a graduate of Baylor School and received his undergraduate degree from Sewanee, after which he began teaching 7thand 8thgrade English at Fredricksburg Academy.  After receiving a Master’s degree in Education Administration and Supervision, Andy spent the next eleven years at Episcopal School of Acadiana where he served as Upper School Dean of Students and most recently as Upper School Head.
    To Andy, the Hammond family, and its sense of community, are as compelling as the educational philosophy of preparing students for successful futures. “When I initially visited Hammond, I was most impressed by the spirit of adventure encountered that was so obviously blended with a forward-thinking philosophy of educating students.  But upon visiting with families, students, and faculty, I’ve come to realize that this is a very special community.  We’ve been warmly welcomed and already feel at home.”
    In his role as Head of Middle School, Andy is looking forward to blending his educational experiences with the Hammond culture to help make it the best middle years program possible.  “I’m looking forward to taking my independent school experience, and with the support of a great Middle School faculty, helping grow what is already an impressive program.”
    In welcoming Andy to Hammond, Headmaster Chris Angel noted, “The breadth and depth of Andy’s experience as a Division Head, Dean of Students for Upper and Middle Schools, Middle School Teacher, and Coach make him a great fit for our school. We are extremely fortunate to have someone with his leadership skills and experience a part of the Hammond family.”
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  • "Science Bob" and Josie Bensko Work with Hammond Teachers

    It wasn’t exactly rocket science, but our science teachers certainly had a blast during a  professional development day with “Science Bob” Pflugfelder and Josie Bensko.  Teachers from all three divisions worked with these nationally-known science instructors who guided them in creating classrooms that capture and engage students in the learning process. The duo presented excellent inquiry-based ideas and strategies, as well as experiments that can be used in the classroom.
    “Science Bob” Pflugfelder is a science teacher, author, maker and presenter.  He is a regular guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Live with Kelly and Ryan, The Dr. Oz Show, and Nickelodeon’s Nicky, Ricky, Dicky and Dawn. Additional television appearances also include The Today Show, Hack My Life, Good Morning America, Home & Family, among others.
    Josie Bensko is a sixth grade science teacher in Illinois whose teaching ethos is one of hands-on, minds-on learning.  Her classroom philosophy is fueled by engagement, and positivity … coupled with a bit of chaos. 
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  • June

    Class of 2019 Graduates

    The Class of 2019, comprised of 71 students, graduated on May 25 with commencement exercises held at First Presbyterian Church. The 54th graduating class was accepted to 85 colleges in 26 states, the District of Columbia and Australia.  They will attend 35 colleges in 18 states, the District of Columbia, and Australia. 

    Class members were admitted to numerous highly-selective schools including Rice, Cal-Berkeley, Middlebury, Davidson, UNC-Chapel Hill, Vassar, Southern Cal, and more.
    Three members of the class were recognized by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation as National Merit Scholars.  One member of the class was named a U.S. Presidential Scholar Semifinalist, one of the nation’s highest honors representing the top 621 American high school students.
    Twenty-three percent of the class met the qualifications to be named South Carolina Palmetto Fellows, the state’s highest lottery-funded scholarship award.  Members of the Class of 2019 were offered merit scholarships in excess of 6.5million dollars.

    Congratulations to the Class of 2019!
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  • May

    Bronson Myers Repeats as SCISA 3A State Golf Champion

    Senior Bronson Myers, a member of the Varsity Boys Golf Team, won Low Medalist honors
    in dramatic fashion Tuesday, April 30 at the SCISA 3A Men’s Golf State Tournament. A birdie on the 36th and final hole of the tournament, Bronson’s last as a Skyhawk, gave one of the most accomplished Hammond golfers in years his second straight medalist state title.
    What a way to cap a career!
    As a team, the Skyhawk men placed T2, just 2 shots behind Trinity Byrnes for the SCISA 3A State title.
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  • Fourth Grade Students Design Helping Hands

    Inspired by E-Nable, a volunteer organization dedicated to using 3D printers to help create prosthetic hands for children, Lower School Librarian Bonnie Lynch engaged fourth grade students in a STEAM project that combines both empathy and creativity.  E-Nable hands are unique in that they are designed by volunteers, consist of bright, bold colors and operate without batteries or computers and resemble Power Ranger hands.  In addition to helping children grasp and throw a ball, the hands have had the unexpected benefit of helping deflect bullying due to their novel appearance. Fourth grade students initially created hand-shaped prototypes out of cardboard utilizing straws and string to enable joint action. Using innovative techniques and ingenuity, students learned to use cardboard knives and devise a “needle” to help thread the strings through the straw, creating knuckle action.  The group’s goal is to eventually create a 3D prototype in the Innovation Center’s Maker Space.
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  • LS Music Teacher, Cherie Herring, Keynotes at Music EDnet

    Lower School Music Instructor, Cherie Herring, is serving as keynote speaker and presenter at the Music EDnet, DAYTIME Conference in Melbourne, Australia this month.  The professional development conference focuses on the effective integration of technology in music education.  Incorporating technology in the music classroom at Hammond has helped showcase how well it can be used as a tool to reach every child.  Cherie is often asked to assist other music educators with technology deployment and is a recipient of the 2018 Mike Kovins TI:ME Teacher of the Year Award. Her continuous professional development in the forms of articles, contributions to books, lesson plans, and presentations for TI:ME conferences and other state music education conferences across the country, has assisted numerous music educators with successfully integrating technology into their classrooms.  
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    Congratulations to the Varsity Baseball team for clinching the SCISA 3A State Title in a match-up against Ben Lippen.  The Skyhawks erased an early five-run deficit and then scored four runs in the ninth inning to defeat Ben Lippen 11-7 in front of a standing-room only crowd at Lexington County Blowfish Stadium.  The State Title win makes the 148th State Championship for the Skyhawk Nation!

    In the News!

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  • April

    Wild Rice With a Side of Fish

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  • March

    Alumna Kara Burgess Glenn '96 Joins the Upper School Office

    Kara Glenn (’96) has been a  12 year Hammond student, a Hammond parent to Cole (6th) and Juliet (2nd), and now she will become part of Hammond’s staff as Upper School Administrative Assistant.
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  • Author and Humanitarian Aid Worker Carl Wilkens Speaks

    Hammond’s Upper School welcomed Carl Wilkens, humanitarian aid worker and author of I’m Not Leaving.  In the book, Wilkens chronicles his experience as the only American who stayed in Rwanda during the 1994 genocide, even as the American government ordered its citizens home. Wilkens spoke at an assembly, sharing stories of the escalating violence in Rwanda and how his decision to stay positively impacted others.  He discussed genocide and what leads a mentality of division to develop and how we as a people can reverse thinking that leads to atrocities such as those that occurred in Rwanda and countless concentration camps under the Nazis. According to Wilkens, “Genocide stems from thinking that says, “My world would be better without you in it!”
    One of the most poignant lessons from Wilkens’ experience in Rwanda was embracing the concepts of reconciliation and rebuilding.  While he felt he had to remain angry in order to honor the legacy of those killed, he came to the realization that reconciliation was the most effective means for shifting paradigms.
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  • Alumni Spotlight Beth Hooks Tucker '12

    A Student’s Culinary Passion Matched with a Hammond Faculty Mentor is a Recipe for Career Success!
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  • Emily Farr '96 Director of the SC Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation

    Alumni Spotlight Emily Held Farr '96

    Emily Held Farr '96 is Making a Difference for All South Carolinians as Director of the SC Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation
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  • HAMMOND Joins Mastery Transcript Consortium

    As the only member school in South Carolina, Hammond has been invited to join the Mastery Transcript Consortium.  The consortium, comprised of member schools and other stakeholders from across the nation, is working to codesign a new digital transcript that reflects the unique skills, strengths and interests of individual students. 
    The MTC model is substantively different from the traditional model of crediting and transcript design, which is typically organized around content-oriented courses, Carnegie units for credit and grades. The Mastery Transcript model is organized around performance areas (rather than academic departments), mastery standards and micro-credits (rather than grades). Each micro-credit applied to a transcript signifies complete mastery of a specific skill, knowledge block or habit of mind as defined by the crediting high school.
    MTC schools are supported by a technology platform that allows the complete record of a student’s credits and submitted evidence to be submitted to college admission offices and professional organizations for evaluation. This electronic Mastery Transcript allows college admission officers to dive deep within a transcript to see the specific credits of the sending high school and actual evidence of student work and mastery, thus giving depth and transparency to the student’s work record. With a Mastery Transcript, public and private high schools alike will be better equipped to prepare students for college, their careers and life.
    “We were honored to be asked to join the list of Mastery Transcript schools,” said Chris Angel, headmaster of Hammond School. “Hammond’s goal has long been to prepare students in many walks of life and stay on the forefront of best new practices for education, and the Mastery Transcript better reflects a student’s knowledge of a particular subject and gives college admissions offices a broader picture of a student’s body of work and strengths.”
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  • February

    Country of Study Day Brings Morocco to Hammond

    For 29 years, Hammond’s Country of Study program has added a global emphasis to the school’s curriculum for students in grades Pre-kindergarten through 12.  The typical Hammond student will have been exposed to at least 14 countries by and several languages by graduation.
    Annually, the school sends three faculty members, one from each Division, to visit the chosen country of study for that year.  While abroad, faculty members immerse themselves in the culture, history, language, and cuisine of the country–always mindful of ways to incorporate its unique aspects into the curriculum.  
    The Parents Association’s Country of Study Day in the Lower School helps bring the chosen country to life. Classrooms are transformed and students are transported to a different culture through a variety of activities and learning opportunities. Games, trivia, and authentic cuisine make the experience complete. 
    This year’s selected country is Morocco, and Country of Study Day was Friday, February 22.  The opening ceremony began at the start of school with a Moroccan market scene complete with belly dancers, live snakes, and tea making.  Throughout the day, students rotated through stations that included making leather bracelets, soap, gift bags for Moroccan school children, and blue city artwork, fossil digging with imprinting, and sintir instrument building.

    View more here.
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  • Renowned Artist Terrance Henderson Visits Hammond

    We were delighted to welcome to campus Terrance Henderson, renowned for his work as an actor, singer, dancer, director, and choreographer. Students explored movement and imagination with Henderson and assistant Jonathan Smith.  Terrance was recipient of the 2016 Steve G. Morrison Visionary Award, which honors someone in our community who exhibits the best combination of vision and leadership, applied to arts and history and the entire cultural foundation of the City, and the value they bring to Columbia.
    The Christopher Gadsden Wells Endowment for the Arts made this unique opportunity for Hammond students possible. Established in 2013 in honor and memory of Christopher Wells (’11), the Endowment brings gifted and talented artists from around the world to help nurture and inspire artistic talent.  A son of Muffie Wells (‘77) and Jack Wells (‘78), Christopher found his heart in theater and music at Hammond. 
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  • January

    Alumni Council Hosts First Career Networking Event for Juniors and Seniors

    On January 13, the Alumni Council hosted its first-ever Career Networking Night for Juniors and Seniors, 
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    Two Hammond math teams participated in the 2019 SCISA High School Math Meet, with the winning team earning 206 points, over 30 points ahead of the next competitor. The winning team was led by Tobi Ogunfowora, who placed 1st individually with a perfect score.  Karl Cao earned 5th place overall, and Vicki Li earned 3rd place overall in her first math contest. Dami Olatosi and Elsa Saine rounded out the team with impressive scores. 
    Hammond's second team placed 6th overall, the highest placement for any second team from a SCISA school. Team members were Amelia Gandhi, Doga Ozmen, Randy Chen, Yuhan Huang, and Karry Zheng. High scorer was Randy Chen, who earned a medal for having the highest score on this team.

    CONGRATULATIONS to these State Championship Skyhawk Mathletes!
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  • Equestrian and Soccer Teams Honored at Statehouse

    Three State Championship teams were recently recognized at the Statehouse for their 2018 athletic success.  Both the Western and Hunt Seat Equestrian Teams, along with the Varsity Boys Soccer Team, were honored on the floor of the SC House of Representatives.  Congratulations to these scholar-athletes for their impressive accomplishments on the playing fields.
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  • Select Ensemble Sings at Governor's Inauguration

    It was a true honor for our Select Ensemble to sing at the 97th SC Inauguration of Governor Henry McMaster this week. By special invitation, the group performed at both the Governor's Prayer Service and at the Inauguration.
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  • 2018 Cum Laude Inducts Seven Students

    Hammond welcomed Margaret Clay '06 back to campus as keynote speaker for the 2018 Cum Laude Society induction of seven Upper School students. The Herbert Barks Chapter of The Cum Laude Society is one of only five such chapters in South Carolina, and the second chapter chartered in the State.  Considered a Phi Beta Kappa equivalent in secondary education, Cum Laude recognizes academic achievement, honor, and integrity. 

    Margaret shared stories with Upper School students about her years at Hammond, the value of hard work and perseverance, and discovering one’s academic passion in the process.  Students inducted included Morgan Aitchison, Ryan Asbill, Lake Barrett, George Mitchell, Justice Myers, Owen Ramsby, and Logan Shepherd.

    A graduate of Wake Forest University, Margaret majored in English, and is quick to credit the influence of Hammond faculty members Dr. Ragan, Mr. Purday, Mr. Fowler, Dr. Matthusen, Mrs. Dunne, and Mr. Neal.  She works as editor and associate publisher of Columbia Metropolitan Magazine, a company owned by her family.  
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  • Select Ensemble Concert in Poland and the Czech Republic

    Hammond’s premiere auditioned choir, the Select Ensemble, embarked on an impressive international concert tour of Central Europe from December 26, 2018 to January 3, 2019. This talented group of upper school students shared the gift of song from Krakow, Poland to Prague, Czech Republic.
    The group began their journey in Krakow, visiting the hallowed grounds of Auschwitz.  Leaving Poland, the group moved to Europe's Golden City, the City of 100 Spires, Prague, where their music delighted audiences from all over the world.  From the foot of the Charles Bridge to towns like Kutna Hora and Brno, the choir shared their talent through multiple impromptu and formal performances. 
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