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explore our CAMPUS

What's cool about our campus is that it's spread out over seven acres in Philadelphia's historic neighborhood of Germantown. The buildings are an eclectic mix of old and new, a unique look and feel more consistent with a college campus. With three gyms, three auditoriums, a student center, numerous open, green spaces and nine classroom buildings, it's a place worthy of adoration and exploration. The Meetinghouse, at the center of it all, provides a beautiful and spiritual focal point.

1. Main Building 2. Meetinghouse 3. Sharpless 4. Hargroves 5. Wade Science Center 6. Alumni Building 7. Admissions 8. Living Graveyard 9. Dead Graveyard 10. Loeb Performing Arts Center 11. Smith Gym 12. Cary Building 13. Friends Free Library 14. Field House 15. Scattergood Gym

we have deep roots in this place

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The Pillars of A

Quaker Education

At GFS, students and teachers gather in Meeting for Worship once each week. This is a time for shared, silent contemplation. Anyone who feels moved to speak may rise and do so. It is a simple formula, and can be a remarkably powerful experience.In these days of constant connectivity, the ability and opportunity to sit in silence have special value. Meeting for Worship is a cornerstone of the GFS culture that many come to cherish throughout their lives.

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speak the truth

We strive to deal fairly, equally and honestly with everyone. We aim to do as we say, reflecting our beliefs in our actions. even when it is inconvenient or challenging, we stand by our convictions, striving to lead lives of integrity.

Shine Together

We are all blessed with remarkable gifts. We are equally qualified to seek truth and to hear the voice of God. Every person deserves equal respect. For these reasons, we work against prejudice and discrimination and for equality.

stay connected

"Alone we can do little; together we can do so much."* We know there is strength in cooperation and wisdom to be found when many perspectives come together. We believe in the power of community.*
The words of Helen Keller.

keep it simple

In every way we can, we try to minimize the distractions that can draw our attention from the important things in life. This means not becoming overwhelmed by the busyness of daily routine. It means seeking balance. It means embracing simplicity.

care for all

This planet we inhabit, the talents we've been given, the community of which we are a part- all hold remarkable value. We must be responsible, imaginative and proactive in protecting these gifts and caring for the world and people around us. We must exercise good stewardship.

promote peace

We believe each life is precious and unique. We stand against war and violence and work to eliminate their root causes, including ignorance, racism, hatred and oppression. We are committed to creating peace.

  • Truth
  • Shine
  • Connected
  • Simple
  • Care
  • Peace

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Need a Good Book Recommendation?

Each year, at the end of the summer, the Friends Free Library asks staff, faculty, and students for book recommendations based on the books they've enjoyed over their break. 

The results are always as rich, varied, and as stimulating as the GFS community itself. There are more than 100 titles on this year's list. Early in the year, the books and the names of those who recommended them are displayed in the Front Hall of the Main Building.

Kate Garrity, Director of Library Services, says, "I've heard from faculty and staff how much they look forward to seeing the display and receiving the list because they use it to build their own 'must read list' of books."

Although summer days are behind us, it's never too late for great book recommendations, especially as the cooler weather beckons us to curl up with a good book.

Here's the Google doc of this year's "GFS Best Books of Summer Reading List 2017" for easy printing. The full list is also below. 


Dear Ijeawele, or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions - Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Kate Jones)


Prague Winter - Madeleine Albright (Sue Scirica)


White Rage - Carol Anderson (Meg Goldner Rabinowitz)


The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood (Sarah Detwiler)


Britt-Marie Was Here - Fredrik Backman (Elise Hocking '18)


My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry - Fredrik Backman (Shannon Rowley-Lavelle)


The Last Mile - David Baldacci (Kavi Palmer '18)


The House at the Edge of Night - Catherine Banner (Dana Weeks)


Abarat - Clive Barker (Taz Vandenberg '19)


The Somnambulist - Jonathan Barnes (Brenden Dahl '20)


We Show What We Have Learned and Other Stories - Claire Beams (Sara Primo)


Lilli DeJong - Janet Benton (Diane Marinoff, Kate Garrity)


Sing for Your Life: A Story of Race, Music, and Family - Daniel Bergner (Miku Shiota)


The Last Days of Cafe Leila - Donia Bijan (Ellen Rothman)


Life Drawing - Robin Black (Meg Cohen Ragas)


The Night of the Gun - David Carr (Rachel Reynolds)


The Horse's Mouth - Joyce Cary (Susan Lowry)


The Selection - Kiera Cass (Ruby Simpson '21)


The Siren - Kiera Cass (Ruby Simpson '21)


Moonglow - Michael Chabon (Dick Dupuis  '75)


New Boy - Tracy Chevalier (Ellen Rothman)


Too Much and Not the Mood - Durga Chew-Bose (Alex Levin)


The Real Goods INDEPENDENT BUILDER Designing & Building A House Your Own Way - Sam Clark (John Pax)


Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion - Elizabeth L. Cline (Amy Celentano)


Between the World and Me - Ta-Nehisi Coates (Katie Maguire '19, Hannah Caldwell Henderson)


Glitter and Glue: A Memoir - Kelly Corrigan (Page Fahrig-Pendse)


The Search for WondLa - Tony DiTerlizzi (Leah Metelits '21)


All the Light We Cannot See - Anthony Doerr (Katie Turk  '21, Renee Warnick)


The Whistling Season - Ivan Doig (Craig Stevens)


Stella By Starlight - Sharon Draper (Lela Betts)


Between Them: Remembering My Parents - Robert Ford (Mary Haon)


Goodnight Maine - Adam Gamble (Kasey Henderson)


Hunger - Roxane Gay (Rachel Fumia)

My Side of the Mountain - Jean Craighead George (Leah Metelits '21)

Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI - David Grann (Carol Rawlings Miller, Lynne Tucker)


Camino Island - John Grisham (Anne Gerbner)


Homegoing - Yaa Gyasi (Natasha Labbe, M. McDonald)


The Always War - Margaret Peterson Haddix (Madison Wells-McFee '21)


Exit West: A Novel - Mohsin Hamid (Meg Goldner Rabinowitz)


The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided By Politics and Religion  - Jonathan Haidt (Ava Sinai '20)


The Summer I Turned Pretty - Jenny Han (Ruby Simpson '21)


I Can't Make This Up - Kevin Hart (Alyson Solomon)


The Nix - Nathan Hill (Maryanne Rawlings)


Unbroken - Laura Hillenbrand (Ben Botvinick '21)


The Story Sisters - Alice Hoffman (Amy Celentano)


Mississippi Blood - Greg Iles (Megan Hess)


Waking Up White  - Debby Irving (Eli Scearce)


News of the World - Paulette Jiles (Connie Thompson)


The Vegetarian - Han Kang (Danielle Miller)


The Fratricides - Nikos Kazantzakis (Jim Barron)


Zorba the Greek - Nikos Kazantzakis (Jim Barron)


Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants - Robin Wall Kimmerer (Shannon Rowley-Lavelle, Sarah Yanuck)


The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World - Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu (Kathryn Murphy)

I Know This Much Is True - Wally Lamb (Amalya Weiss  '19)


Woman No. 17 - Edan Lepucki (Danielle Miller)


We Were Liars - E. Lockhart (Ruby Simpson '21)


H Is For Hawk - Helen Macdonald (Megan Culp)


Infinite in Between - Carolyn Mackler (Ruby Simpson '21)


Malcolm X: A Life Of Reinvention - Manning Marable (Jared Wood)


Dream Animals: A Bedtime Journey - Emily Winfield Martin (Kasey Henderson)


The Black House - Peter May (Betsy Neiva)


Nutshell - Ian McEwan (Connie Thompson)


Hero of the Empire: The Boer War, a Daring Escape, and the Making of Winston Churchill - Candice Millard (Page Fahrig-Pendse)


Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Madness, Medicine and the Murder of a President  - Candace Millard (Betsy Neiva)


The Sky is Everywhere - Jandy Nelson (Ruby Simpson '21)


The Red Parts - Maggie Nelson (Rachel Reynolds)


All the Bright Places - Jennifer Niven (Ruby Simpson '21)


Born A Crime - Trevor Noah (Beth Dzwil)


A Load of Hooey - Bob Odenkirk (Ben Botvinick '21)


New and Selected Poems, Volume One - Mary Oliver (Alyce Callison)


Uncharitable: How Restraints on Nonprofits Undermine Their Potential - Dan Pallotta (Colette Kleitz)


Vanessa and Her Sister - Priya Parmar (Lisa Burns)


Commonwealth - Ann Patchett (Hannah Jacoby-Rupp)


Freak The Mighty - Rodman Philbrick (Lela Betts)


The Making of the Atomic Bomb - Richard Rhoades (Lisa Burns)


The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America - Richard Rothstein (André Lee)


The God of Small Things - Arundhati Roy (Robin Nourie)


Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe - Benjamin Alire Saenz (Molly Connolly-Ungar '21)


Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger (Ben Botvinick '21)


The Light We Lost - Jill Santopolo (Elise Hocking '18)


Lincoln In The Bardo - George Saunders (Hannah Caldwell Henderson, Jenn Kolff, Daniel Rouse)


My Promised Land - Ari Shavit (Nicole Kahn)


I Capture the Castle - Dodie Smith (Ava Sinai '20)


Just Kids - Patti Smith (Renee Warnick)


Swing Time - Zadie Smith (Lisa Burns, Connie Thompson, Sona Wink  '21)


Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck (Sona Wink  '21)


Just Mercy - Bryan Stevenson (Kavi Palmer '18)


Tiny Beautiful Things - Cheryl Strayed (Rachel Fumia)


Anything is Possible - Elizabeth Strout (Ellen Berman, Charla Okewole, Meg Goldner Rabinowitz)


The Hate U Give - Angie Thomas (Kate Garrity, Alyson Solomon)


Future Shock - Alvin Toffler (Kathy Paulmier)


Brooklyn - Colm Toibin (Dana Weeks)


A Gentleman in Moscow - Amor Towles (Kate Jones, Cheryl Pinkus, Dana Weeks)


Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis - JD Vance (Rosario Manion, Daniel Rouse, Lynne Tucker,)


Sing, Unburied, Sing - Jesmyn Ward (Anne Gerbner)


The Martian - Andy Weir (Lucas Kiewek  '21)


The New York Stories of Edith Wharton - Edith Wharton (Julie Marren)


Leadership and the New Science: Discovering Order in a Chaotic World - Margaret J. Wheatley (Sean Hamer)


The Gatekeepers: How the White House Chiefs of Staff Define Every Presidency - Chris Whipple (Page Fahrig-Pendse, Dana Weeks)


The Underground Railroad - Colson Whitehead (Lynne Tucker)


One Crazy Summer - Rita Williams-Garcia (Marj Little)


Another Brooklyn - Jacqueline Woodson (Sarah Pacifico)


Why Buddhism Is True:The Science and Philosophy of Meditation and Enlightenment - Robert Wright (Daniel Rouse)



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