Welcome to the San Mateo Campus Writing & Research Center
As the name suggests, this Upper School learning hub emphasizes the practices of writing and research, as well as providing thoughtfully curated fiction, nonfiction, and reference collections. We empower students to be strong, discerning researchers in any post-secondary context, and we help every student develop a clear, confident writing voice. More broadly, the WRC nourishes our community’s culture of curiosity. Our friendly, two-story space welcomes students with comfortable places to read, study, or collaborate with their classmates.
Research Skills and Resources
The world of research opens up to our students as they embark on their interdisciplinary studies at the Upper School. Our research librarian works closely with faculty to build our collections of digital and print resources, ensuring our students have both broad and deep access to the information they need. While creating a library for our students and faculty, our staff selects resources focused on the division’s specific curricula and special projects. These options include:
Nonfiction and reference materials, including specialized encyclopedias, primary and secondary sources, magazines, and newspapers
On- and off-campus access to 20 academic databases, offering thousands of articles from scholarly journals, as well as court cases, historical documents, and more
Access to e-books and audiobooks via OverDrive
Our librarian joins classes to coach students in research skills and also works extensively with students in one-on-one meetings during their course projects, guiding them in research strategies, source evaluation, and citation.
Individualized coaching is a signature of the WRC’s writing program. Students can meet one-on-one with a writing specialist at any stage of their writing to review their ideas and drafts for any academic or creative project.
Whether reviewing a research paper, a piece of fiction, or a college application essay, students consider both the work at hand and their overall writing process. With their coaches, students strengthen their writing’s clarity, argument, and structure; refine their tone and voice; and learn new techniques to match their writing needs. Our writing specialists also offer in-classroom student workshops and consultations to faculty.
The WRC hosts the Upper School’s peer-tutoring program, an initiative that exemplifies Nueva’s culture of collaborative learning.
Students apply to train as peer tutors; then selected applicants spend several weeks discussing and practicing their coaching skills before offering one-on-one appointments with their fellow students. The program began with student support in math and writing, and now also offers help in Mandarin and computer science. Students from any Upper School grade can book a session with a peer tutor.
This type of academic support supplements the work a student may do with their teachers and the WRC staff — students may feel more comfortable talking with a fellow student. Peer tutors, meanwhile, pick up new coaching techniques, which often dovetail with their SEL skills, and gain experience with different learning styles. Throughout the academic year, peer tutors have regular check-ins to discuss their practice.
Special Programs and Events
We regularly participate in local and national events that promote our culture of reading. Examples of past programs include:
While FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) team captain Lucy D. was building the chassis, build team lead James T. was working on the flywheel launcher, Jason C. was busy creating the intake, and Howard L. and Anton P. were building the wobble arm. This was life for the Sharkbytes, who worked together remotely to design, build, and program a robot for the 2020–21 FTC competition.
We are delighted to welcome Nueva’s new Director of Environmental Citizenship Sarah Koning, who can’t wait to share her innovative ideas with the community. In the following Q&A, Sarah shares her enthusiasm and vision for the months ahead.
Mavericks Making Waves is our latest roundup of exceptional student and faculty accomplishments and activities happening beyond Nueva's walls.
Over the past 14 months, the Nueva Business Office rolled up its sleeves, successfully managing a range of new and unexpected challenges, as its people quietly and effectively supported students, staff, faculty and parents.
As a school community, we stand against all forms of violence and hatred directed towards any given group.
Purposeful and immersive travel is a cornerstone of the Nueva experience. The places we go, the people we meet, and the way we reflect on our experiences as an entire community reaffirms and develops our understanding of the world. The current trip planning team—led by Dean of Student Life Hillary Freeman, Eighth-grade Dean Cynthia Kosut, and Lower School Division Head Megan Terra—and the grade-level deans have taken on the challenge of “traveling” during a pandemic.
We are delighted to welcome Interim Upper School Division Head Lillian Howard, who has hit the ground running during the past several weeks to embrace the Nueva community and learn all there is to know about the upper school.
It may be fair to say that every program we’ve run, every class we’ve taught, every guest speaker we’ve welcomed since March 2020 have relied on one major thing—technology.