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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
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  • Connected
  • Simple
  • Care
  • Peace

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Andrew DeGothseir: Growing Our Green Spaces

Andrew DeGothseir: Growing Our Green Spaces

Andrew's favorite thing about working with the plants on campus are the changes brought by the varying weather and seasons. "It's always different. Every day changes." 

Andrew DeGothseir has a big job. As the Campus Horticulturist, Andrew manages all of the leafy growing things on campus, and can be credited with a substantial part of the ongoing beautification of campus. He also played a key role in the school’s recent certification as The Betty Cary Arboretum, named for the late Betty Cary, who worked tirelessly at GFS for more than 65 years in various capacities and cared deeply for the campus gardens and trees. 

“It all started when I was in high school,” Andrew says of his budding interest in cultivation. “My school offered a horticulture course for juniors. It was my science course that year, and there was this instant connection. I took the advanced course in my senior year, and then, looking at college, horticulture was it.” Andrew has warm words for his alma mater, Delaware Valley College (now University), which offered a great program. “I’ve been doing this for 16 years now. That’s half my life in horticulture.”

Andrew’s favorite thing about working with the plants on campus? The changes brought on by the varying weather and seasons. “It’s always different. Every day changes.” 

Andrew praises the recent efforts by teachers, particularly in the Lower School, who encourage students to be mindful of the gardens. “It’s important for kids to learn to respect the spaces. If kids ravage through, we wouldn’t have these pollinators,” he explains, referring to the green space on the Common, loaded with plants to attract and feed butterflies and bees. “This used to be a parking lot. It’s really great that it’s not anymore.”

Monarch caterpillar on milkweed plant

Andrew has lots of milkweed growing in the garden on the Common, which this young Monarch caterpillar appreciates very much. If you look closely when you pass, you may see these caterpillars and even a chrysalis or two.