New Students

We can't wait to welcome you onto campus and into our community as the newest member of #PenguinNation.

Welcome to the Waddle

We want to make your transition into the Waddle as easy as possible. This page contains helpful resources, important dates, and essential information.

Our Admissions team is eager to hear from you and help your family in any way we can, so don't hesitate to reach out! You can contact us at [email protected] or (978) 827-7300.



Mark Your Calendars!

To help you schedule arrivals, departures, and campus visits, please review our 2024-25 Academic Calendar. The calendar has complete details for the school year, including winter and spring breaks, Super Saturdays, Free Weekends, and Family Weekends. 

Winter/Spring Breaks: Extended periods where Cushing Academy closes for break. Students must leave campus during Winter and Spring Breaks. 

Super Saturdays: Saturdays with required morning programming for all students (day and residential). Students may not sign out on these weekends until after Super Saturday programming has concluded.

Free Weekends/Days: Extended weekends or days when no classes are scheduled at Cushing. Many students travel or go home for Free Weekends. For students staying on campus, special programming is available.

Family Weekends: Special weekend opportunities for families to visit campus, sit-in on classes, and meet with teachers and advisors. There is one Family Weekend in the fall another in the winter. Family Weekends are often followed by Free Days, and many families will sign their child out for an extended weekend.




Arrival Day + Orientation Information

ARRIVAL DAY: Wednesday, September 4, 2024

New international students and students who are trying out for varsity fall athletics (cross country, field hockey, soccer, or volleyball) arrive and move in on Wednesday, September 4, a few days earlier than the rest of the student body. Please note: If you are arriving on September 4, you will move in and begin living at Cushing on that day. (If you are a day student, you will coordinate with your fall coach about staying in the dorms during pre-season.)

*International Student Orientation is for students traveling from outside the US who require math and English placement. Students who are native English-speakers are not required to participate in International Student Orientation. If you have a question about whether you should arrive on September 4, please email [email protected].

ARRIVAL DAY: Saturday, September 7, 2024

Most students — both new and returning — arrive at Cushing and move into their dorms on Saturday, September 7. Preseason and International orientation will conclude in the morning, and all students on campus will begin formal orientation in the afternoon on Saturday.



  • On your Arrival Day, you should plan to get to campus before 12:00 noon. In August, you will be asked to register in advance for a 15-minute arrival window on your Arrival Day. Arrival slots are available from 8 am to 12 noon.

  • Student programming on Arrival Day begins in the early afternoon. Complete Arrival Day schedules will be available closer to each Arrival Day, but parents who are in attendance should expect to say their goodbyes sometime before 3:00 pm. Following student goodbyes, parents and family members are invited to a Head of School Reception and Parent Social. It's a great opportunity to mingle with other parents and celebrate the start of our new year. 
  • For students flying to Logan Airport (BOS) alone, bus transportation is available for $40. The Cushing bus leaves from Logan Airport at 11:00 am on both arrival days. You will sign up for bus service on the Fall Registration Sign Up Form in August.

    On Arrival Day, Cushing's bus service is one way, and is only available for students. If your family needs transportation to and from Logan or another airport, you will need to arrange that privately. For your convenience, the following is a list of some transportation companies in the area:

If you have any questions about Arrival Day — or which Arrival Day is appropriate for your family — or transportation to campus, please do not hesitate to contact our Admissions Office at [email protected] or (978) 827-7300.


Summer Timeline

Below is a helpful timeline of events, recommendations, forms, and responsibilities leading up to your arrival at Cushing this fall:


In the month of MAY...

  • Complete your current school year in strong academic standing.
  • Schedule a physical/medical exam. You will need a current exam — completed within one year of the first day of school — in order to complete your Cushing health forms in July. If your child's most recent physical/medical exam is from before September 9, 2023, please schedule a physical with your child's primary care physician as soon as possible.
  • Schedule a June appointment with your Academic Advisor. You will receive a communication from our Academic Office in mid-May with information about signing up for an initial meeting with your Academic Advisor in June. > Schedule Appointment

  • Prior to that meeting, you should review the 2024-25 Course Catalog and submit your top choices on the course selection form in MyCushing. In June, you and your advisor will discuss your choices, assess proper class placement, and consult on building the best possible schedule for 2024-25.
  • Begin Enrollment Forms in MyCushing. In the last week of May, new students will gain access to their email address. At the same time, enrollment forms will become available — including course selection, community read selection, roommate questionnaire, Magnus health forms, and other administrative forms. Enrollment forms are due June 15, except for Magnus health forms, which are due July 15.


In the month of JUNE...

  • Finish enrollment forms in MyCushing. All enrollment forms — except for Magnus health forms — are due by June 15, 2024.
  • Have an initial meeting with your Academic Advisor.
  • Send final transcripts to the Academic Office.
  • Receive information on fall varsity sports tryouts and summer training from the Athletic Office. In your MyCushing enrollment forms, if you indicated interest in one of our fall varsity sports (cross country, field hockey, soccer, or volleyball), you will receive information about training and preseason from the Athletics Department.


In the month of JULY...

  • Complete Magnus health forms (available in MyCushing). Health forms are due July 15. You will need documentation of a current exam — completed within one year of the first day of school — in order to complete your Magnus health forms. 
  • Attend Arrival + Health Form Webinar. On Tuesday, July 9, Director of Academic Affairs Sarah Catlin and Director of Health + Wellness will host a webinar answering any questions about arrival, health forms, and student life. 
    > Register for Webinar
  • Review What to Bring and start dorm shopping.
  • Make travel arrangements to arrive at Cushing on your Arrival Day.


In the month of AUGUST...

  • Complete Fall Registration Sign Up Form. At the beginning of the month, you will be asked to register in advance for a 15-minute arrival window on your Arrival Day. Arrival slots are available from 8 am to 12 noon. 
  • Complete Fall Activity Form in MyCushing. A full listing of fall activities will be circulated in August in conjunction with the availability of the Fall Activity Form. 
  • Review the 2024-25 Community Handbook. The 2024-25 Community Handbook becomes available in August. Parents will need to submit an acknowledgement form that they have reviewed and familiarized themselves with the Community Handbook. Students will review and acknowledge the Handbook during orientation. 
  • Share your Cushing Address with friends and family. Make sure friends and family have your new school address:
    [Your Name]
    39 School Street

    Ashburnham, MA 01430
  • Ship dorm items to Cushing Academy. After August 15, you may ship dorm items to Cushing and you will be able to retrieve them upon your arrival.
  • Day Student Barbecue on August 27. Day student families are invited to kick-off the new year and build connections within our day community at our annual Day Student Barbecue. Look for invites and details in mid-August.