Upper School students have a wide range of after-school programs and club choices, from Mock Trial and digital photography to yearbook and feminist club. All are designed to spark minds, bodies, and imaginations.
Session length: We have fall, winter, and spring sessions
Cost: Club participation is included in tuition, program costs vary
Time: Clubs run 3‒4 pm and programs run from 3-4:30 pm, unless otherwise stated
Location: Dwight’s Main Campus or the Dwight School Athletic Center
Activities and clubs for grades 9-12
- Affinity Groups
- Community Service
- Creativity and School Spirit
- Body and Mind
- Global Service
- Technology, Business, and Entrepreneurism
- Mock Trial, Debate, and Math Teams
- Visual Arts Activities
- Music Ensembles
- Individual Music Lessons
- Testing and Academic Support
The overarching vision of affinity group work is to:
- Provide a safe space for all participants to identify important issues and common concerns through dialogue
- Use individual voices to bring about affirmation, fellowship, connection, and empowerment
- Establish social awareness connections to the School community and the surrounding community.
- Educate oneself and each other
For feminists and those who seek to empower and support the development of women through dynamic programming and community engagement.
White Anti-racist Affinity Group
This group is for white students who want to learn about antiracism and whiteness in the United States and how it impacts identities as white people. This is a group where we talk about our personal experiences with race and its intersection with the history and current experiences of white people in America.
The Prism affinity group brings together LGBTQ students and faculty to build community, address intolerance, and to increase understanding on our campus and within our city. Allies are invited to join events organized by PRISM throughout the year. We are student centered and members are encouraged to set and pursue the group's goals for the year. Whether you want to talk, do advocacy work, or hang out in a welcoming space, join us on Wednesdays
Gender & Sexuality Alliance Club
While Prism operates as an affinity space for students who identify as LGBTQ+, the Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) is a club open to all LGBTQ+ students and allies to meet in a safe space, discuss issues related to gender and sexuality, and plan events that both educate about and celebrate the LGBTQ+ community.
Black Student Union
The Black Student Union (BSU) is a diverse group of students of color with a focus on conversation, learning, and socializing in the Black/African-American community. The BSU will serve as a liaison between students of African descent and Dwight faculty. Sessions are centered around conversations around race, current events, and what it is like to be a Black student at Dwight. The BSU is a space to celebrate Black culture, lifestyles, and history.
Black Lives Matter
For all students interested in joining honest conversations that are of critical reflection on issues of racial justice.
Hispanic & Latinx Heritage
Students in this club will discuss current events in Hispanic communities in the U.S., South America, and Spain; support Latinx and Hispanic members in our Dwight community by sharing cultural experiences, traditions, and stories with each other and with the broader community; come up with ideas for fundraisers, inclusion, and celebration events; and more.
Asian and Pacific Islander Student Alliance
Our APSA group brings together students who identify as Asian to discuss, learn, support one another, and create a space of unity. A wide array of topics will be discussed, such as diversity among the Asian population, fighting stereotypes, representation in the media, and more.
Edu 4 All
In this community service activity, students collaborate with each other to support local charities. Members of the club meet to plan future fundraisers and events. Edu 4 All fosters student participation in community service, as well as promotes philanthropy within our School and the local community.
This club is Dwight’s chapter of SustainABLE Start, a non-profit charity. Members will assemble sustainably made toiletries into care packages and distribute them through the New York Common Pantry to low-income and homeless individuals. Members who take on a leadership role will also help run the non-profit on their own time as part of the organization itself.
New York Strong
Dwight students in New York Strong, started amid COVID-19, raised funds last spring to provide healthcare workers with daily essentials and resources. After the return to school and popular interest among students, New York Strong has been developed into a club, where students will meet to organize, prepare, and host various service events for the betterment of the greater New York community both virtually and offsite in-person.
Green Team is an environmental club devoted to advocating change and looking for ways to save the environment. The club’s goal is to improve sustainability here at Dwight. Planned activities include composting, recycling, and raising awareness.
Biodiversity Through Art
Members will learn and focus on why wildlife conservation is crucial in this time of zoonotic diseases; spread awareness through various social media platforms; create animal worksheets and a website; and raise funds for conservation projects that the Zoological Society of London America (ZSL) supports, such as protecting pangolins in Nepal and wildlife from illegal trade.
Compassion for Animals
If you love animals, this is the club for you! We will plan the following activities/events:
- Field trips to nearby farm sanctuaries, where you can meet and help with animals that have been rescued from abusive environments
- Community service hours and volunteer opportunities
- Visits to local shelters, where you can learn more about ways to help
- Plan activities for our Lower and Middle School students
- Host guest speakers.
- Develop letter writing campaigns and more
Creativity and School Spirit
Dwight Writers and Literary Magazine
This year-long after-school activity provides an open and supportive environment for students interested in creative writing, including: fiction, poetry, drama, nonfiction, and all other genres. Time is devoted to individual writing as well as workshopping within the group, focusing on constructive and positive feedback designed to guide students into more compelling creative efforts. Additionally, the group publishes the Dwight literary journal, Scintilla, handling layout, artwork, promotion, and all responsibilities of the Editorial Board, including recruiting, selecting, and editing creative pieces for publication from across the Dwight community.
Dwight School Student Newspaper
Dwight School Student Newspaper: Calling all students in grades 9-12 who are interested in joining the inaugural staff and/or freelance contributing to Dwight School's online student newspaper. We are looking for passionate writers, editors, artists, designers, film makers, photographers, and more! Are you interested in covering news, sports, or arts & entertainment, at Dwight and beyond? The student newspaper would be a great place to showcase your skills and passions, while building a portfolio for your future. You will receive volunteer/CAS hours for your contributions.
The Yearbook staff plans, designs, and implements the production of our School yearbook. They learn and apply the skills of graphic designers, advertisers, sales agents, and publishers. Students can register for one or both days.
Dwight Film Club
Each week, we will pick a new film that students can easily stream at home. We will watch the film separately, then come together to discuss and pick the next film. Past movies include Eighth Grade, Wall-E, Groundhog Day, and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. We can accommodate a Zoom/in-person hybrid model!
Tabletop Gaming Club
If you like board games, collectible card games, or RPGs, this club is for you! We provide the space and support to get in some game time at School. Join and bring your passion for competition, storytelling, and rolling dice! Games will be hosted by faculty and students, based on student request, and will meet at lunch.
Foreign Film Club
In parallel with the new Film Club, this new club focuses exclusively on foreign films, which are specifically focused on themes contained in the IB DP Language A curriculum. Students will have two weeks to watch a film on their own and meet every other week to discuss the film and how it intersects with the literature and themes that they’re studying in their Language A courses (whether that be in English, French, Spanish, Mandarin, etc.).
Body and Mind
Mental Health Research Club
Our club focuses on raising awareness regarding mental health; we will discuss and research mental health difficulties. We will also try to better our own mental health through calming activities like meditation, painting, drawing, and others. We will invite guest speakers to speak about their experiences with their own mental health and to share helpful techniques.
Our chess club will focus on educating and enhancing players’ skills. Please have a minimal knowledge of playing with the basic rules of the game and how figures move so we can build on that together.
DNA Barcoding Club
Do you have an interest in science? Join our new club! The Urban Barcode Project (UBP) is a science program spanning the five boroughs of New York City and the surrounding metropolitan area. The UBP is the first large-scale effort to engage high school students using DNA technology to explore biodiversity in New York City and we’ll join in!
Astronomy Observing Club
Join us to learn how to operate our telescopes, the altitude-azimuth mount system, and the equatorial mount system. You’ll learn how to calculate the magnification provided by each telescope/eyepiece combination. We will study the sky, as it can be observed from Manhattan, and conduct star-observing sessions for the third grade Astro Unit as well as star parties for Dwight’s community. Students will act as docents, introducing observers to the telescopes, show them around the observing targets in the sky, and answer questions.
WISER (Women’s Institute for Secondary Education and Research) is a non-profit NGO, which opened the first girls’ boarding school in Muhuru Bay, Kenya, to provide girls with the opportunity to overcome life obstacles through education. Dwight works with WISER through its Partner Program to build global relationships, create an international exchange of ideas, and assist in providing scholarships for girls. Members of Dwight’s WISER group will work on continuing and building relationships with the girls and teachers in Muhuru Bay, as well as further promoting WISER within our Dwight community.
The goal of this club is to empower students to think globally and act locally for the world’s most vulnerable children. We will partner with UNICEF, a world- recognized organization that advocates for the protection of children’s rights, and participate in activities such as fundraising, advocacy, community building, and speaking out for UNICEF’S child survival work in 190 countries.
Current Events Club
The club involves discussing different local and global current event topics. We will focus on discussing topics chosen each week depending on people’s own interests. We will also reach out to students from various schools as well as experts and people with experience so that we can hear about people who are experts in certain fields and what other students think of the events we discuss. We will also focus on ways to bring about change in the topics we discuss and possible action plans. Overall, the main goal would be to have conversations about things that are happening in the world today as well as ways in which we can help.
Technology, Business, and Entrepreneurism
Business and Investment Club
Investment club is a great way to gain experience and insight into the world of finance. Students will learn about investing money, playing the stock market game, and pursuing careers in finance.
This club will offer inspiration and support for any student who aspires to become an entrepreneur. There are also opportunities to make friends, share business ideas, develop professional networks, and build teams for competitions.
In this club, we will explore the idea of cryptocurrency and the developing cryptocurrency market, which have a major impact on our world today, and why they have become so successful. Cryptocurrency involves the development of online coins, such as bitcoin.
3D Design Club
In this club, we will learn about 3D design and printing. Members will be following prompts to create a 3D design project or model responding to the prompt. We will use Tinkercad, Onshape, Openscad, and more, and we will have access to the many new 3D printers throughout the School.
Females in Finance Dwight Branch
Females in Finance is an organization created and run by female students in New York City to address one problem: gender inequality in the business world. Finance is male-dominated, and women are often discouraged from pursuing the field. This is a females-only club designed to educate girls about the financial system and to provide a safe environment for girls to explore their interest in finance.
Spark Tank is Dwight School's incubator for students who are looking to develop skills in the areas of innovation, entrepreneurship, and stewardship.
During Spark Tank's after-school sessions, students meet with Spark Tank mentors for guidance and feedback. Faculty mentors also work with students to prepare them for Spark Tank events, where they present their projects before a panel of judges.
Students who have an existing project or idea can join Spark Tank, or those who simply want to learn more about entrepreneurship are also welcome! Students can join on their own or with a team of collaborators.
Mock Trial, Debate, and Math Teams
Mock Trial Team
Learn to be a lawyer or a witness in the American trial system in this year-long intensive after-school academic program that is open to all Upper School students. The team competes in the state-wide New York Bar Association Mock Trial Tournament and is coached by Mr. Wiesenfeld, the Head of the English Department and a former prosecutor who has conducted numerous jury trials throughout his career.
The team will focus on all aspects of skill development with respect to public speaking and trial advocacy, including: 1. lessons and activities on oral and written persuasion; 2. the foundational elements of American trial law, such as the rules of evidence and burdens of proof; and 3. all components of a jury trial, for both student-attorneys and student-witnesses: pre-trial motions, opening statements, direct examinations, cross examinations, objections, rebuttals, and closing arguments.
Students will have the opportunity to learn how to form arguments and have oral debates on current topics in the news and facing the world. This club will also facilitate ongoing development of critical thinking, articulation, and public speaking skills.
Our Math Team, one of the most competitive teams in New York City, is open to all interested in exercising their brains to work challenging math problems. Your skills will be put to the test when you sit for competitive math contests!
Visual Arts Activities
Art + Design SPARK!
Art + Design Spark! is an after-school opportunity for students to work on individual passion projects as well as to join in on a range of collaborative projects that will be featured across the School. Past collaborative projects include murals, hanging sculptures, laser-cut framed artworks, and photography. We will meet in our new arts and maker space room, where you will have access to traditional art and design-making materials as well as new technologies such as, laser and vinyl cutters, 3D printers, and virtual reality technology.
Intro to Screenwriting
Do you like movies and TV? Have you ever thought about writing a movie or TV show yourself? Intro to Screenwriting is a unique after-school activity that gives you the opportunity to learn important fundamentals, including writing dialogue and using three-act structure. Along the way, you'll develop your own ideas, create your own characters, and eventually write your own short screenplay.
Join us in the visual arts studio for short discussions and experiments to investigate different subjects and techniques. Would you like to try drawing the figure? Have you wondered about how to create the illusion of depth in a landscape? Are you ready to draw a portrait of your favorite pet? Do “poured” paintings look fun to you? Why is Pop art so popular? This is an opportunity to try techniques and ideas that you might carry into other personal artworks.
There are multiple opportunities for students to join music ensembles throughout the school year, including choir, rock band, jazz combo, chamber strings, and more. Upper School music ensembles will be formed at various times throughout the year based on interest/availability, experience level, and performance goals.
If you write/perform/record your own original music (or would like to learn), please visit the website for the new student-run Dwight record label, 566 Records.
Individual Music Lessons
Dwight Music Conservatory
The Dwight Conservatory, an integral part of our Music Department, offers students individual lessons in a wide range of musical instruments and a breadth of musical styles. Students of any and all experience levels are taught by a dedicated team of creative, experienced music professionals, many of whom are graduates of prestigious institutions such as Juilliard, Manhattan School of Music, Mannes College, and the Curtis Institute of Music.
Our Conservatory conveniently offers both in-person and virtual options for private music lessons.
Master Theater Program
Dwight’s Master Theater Program connects students in grades 9-12 who have a strong interest in theater with members of the New York professional theater community. This in-depth virtual theater learning experience, which mirrors those at the college level, is designed specifically for high school students, providing participants with direct contact with artists working on Broadway and Off-Broadway stages. It also affords those who may not plan on pursuing theater in college or as a career with an opportunity to build public speaking skills and the ability to think and act creatively on the spot.
Testing and Academic Support
At Dwight, we’re committed to providing students with the finest counseling and resources to help guide them through every step of the college admissions process. This year, students in grades 9 and 10 will receive direct support as part of the day’s curriculum, as many students are required to take standardized tests for college admissions. In order to provide supplementary opportunities for test preparation, we partner with A-List, a highly regarded test preparation and college admissions organization.
Upper School Math Support
Students are invited to drop by to ask questions about their assignments, or simply have a seat and complete their homework. A math teacher will be available to help, and resources like textbooks and calculators will be provided.
Serving as a Dwight tutor is an opportunity to make a difference by helping your peers and younger students to study more efficiently, while earning SA or CAS credit. Many of today’s best teachers began as student tutors!
The Tools for Success
The Tools for Success club provides students with specific skills and strategies needed to accomplish their academic goals with greater success and aims to enhance students’ reading, writing, and theoretical subject skills through hands-on, engaging activities and games. Students will also participate in activities that target and strengthen their abstract thinking, time management, active reading strategies, writing skills, and numerous concepts to develop learning strategies. These opportunities to sharpen foundational skills will be conducive to students’ current studies at Dwight. There will also be time for homework support at the end of each session.