The Forum

A Public Newspaper for a Private School

The Forum

The Forum

Students Excel in Non-Paideia Sports

Paideia students are involved in a lot of school-sponsored activities, from clubs to sports. Still, many Paideia students do incredible things outside of the school that do not receive as much attention. 

Two Paideia students, Griffin May ’25 and Sebastian Elwood ’25, spend much of their after school hours fencing. Elwood described his passion for the sport beginning when he was just a toddler. “Like many 2-year-old boys, I was very interested in sword fighting,” Elwood says. “My parents took me to an athletic facility for swimming lessons and it happened to have a fencing club. I would stop by the windows wide-eyed and fascinated and told my parents I wanted to fence.” 

Elwood was allowed to join the club at age six and has since had remarkable success in the sport. He trains 15-20 hours a week, splitting time between EPIC Fencing Club in Alpharetta and Fencers Club in New York City. Elwood has traveled to regional, national, and even international competitions, placing second in the southeast region for U17 foil fencers last season and recently receiving his A classification in men’s foil — the highest classification in fencing. He also placed within the top eight in a national tournament and made the top 32 in an international tournament in Paris. 

May began fencing just under 10 years ago, saying that he chose the sport “because my parents figured that if someone was coming at me with a sword I wouldn’t stand around like I did on the soccer field.” Since then, he has made a significant mark as a fencer. May represented the U.S. in the Pan American Games last year, placing 11th. He was also ranked first in his region (most of the southeast of the U.S.) and placed 27th in the Division 3 men’s national championships. May, similarly to Elwood, practices over 15 hours a week, and this practice has clearly paid off. Having one fencer at the caliber of Elwood or May at the school is impressive in itself, but having two is truly remarkable.

Sara Segall ’26 participates in another, perhaps less traditional, outside-of-school sport: aerial. Segall was introduced to the sport at age five. “My fifth birthday party was circus-themed and I got super into it,” Segall says. She began taking summer classes, and by age nine, she had started performing in a troupe. Currently she works with a company called Earth To Sky, working with an ensemble to create semi-annual performances. She rehearses regularly, teaches aerial at an overnight camp, and works as a counselor at a circus camp. Segall specializes in aerial hoop/lyra and aerial rope but also has experience with flying trapeze, silks, hammock, static trapeze, and partner balancing.  

While Paideia provides many opportunities for students to demonstrate their talents, these students pursue their passions through alternative avenues and impress in them. There are many ways in this world to be great, and these students have done so through fencing and aerial.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Krish Leveille
Krish Leveille, Editor-in-Chief

Comments (0)

All The Forum Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *