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  • Writer's pictureAlumni Office

From Grammar to Wall Street

Updated: Dec 11, 2019

As a young student, Daniel Lewis'09 was unmotivated and complained to his parents regularly about the inefficiencies he saw in the school system.

It turns out, Daniel was gifted, and in desperate need of a challenge. After seeking solutions within the public-school system, Daniel’s parents ultimately enrolled him at Grammar in the fall of 2003 with the help of financial aid from the school, and many sacrifices of their own in order to make it financially feasible.

As the bar was raised for Daniel at Grammar, his parents remember watching him transform from unmotivated to enthusiastic. He met the challenges of writing research papers and university-level essays right out of the gate and thrived under the new standards that his teachers at Grammar set for him.

“Unlike my experience in my previous school where I was afraid to stand out, at Grammar, I was taught that it was okay to excel, and just how exhilarating hard work and the ensuing achievement can be,” says Daniel.

Beyond excelling in mainstream subjects like math and English, Daniel applied himself in art, and even joined the debate team, which would eventually lead him to compete for Canada at the World Schools Debating Championships. Daniel looks back fondly on his years at Grammar not just for the academic experience, but for the outstanding teachers and mentors who changed his life forever.

“Grammar’s debate coach, Josh Judah, has long been one of the most respected in the country, and one of the best mentors I could have asked for,” says Daniel.

After graduating from Grammar in 2009, Daniel went on to study at both Princeton and Harvard. Unlike many of his classmates, Daniel adjusted to his new environments with ease, finding himself well prepared to take on new challenges.

“For many of my classmates at Princeton, college was their first experience of realistic marking. But my teachers at Grammar had demanded excellence all along and were not afraid to make it clear when I could do better,” says Daniel.

Aspiring to the same high standards that Grammar had previously laid out for him, Daniel excelled at Princeton and Harvard, and even became a teacher and mentor himself. In these roles, Daniel practiced Grammar’s value of altruism and embodied its “Enter to Learn, Go Forth to Serve” motto, helping others to reach their full potential as he had once been helped to do himself.

After graduating from both Princeton and Harvard, Daniel has recently accepted a research position with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. His parents, Peter and Avril Lewis, could not be more proud.

“Grammar offered possibilities for Daniel way beyond anything we ever imagined. We are incredibly grateful for this experience.” – Avril Lewis
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