Ten Gilman seniors

Senior Encounter

Senior Encounter, the capstone experience of the senior year, enables each senior to explore a field of interest with an adult who works in that area.

After senior exams, each boy engages in a workplace internship with an adult mentor outside of Gilman. Every weekday for two weeks, each boy works alongside this “Encounter mentor,” who has agreed to supervise and teach him about what he or she does on a daily basis.

Contact with the adult, or “mentor” is at the heart of the Encounter. This close working relationship is intended to provide the student with insight into the mentor’s job and the larger field in which he or she works. Along the way, boys also learn what it is like to be in the adult working world and how to function productively in an organization.

A culminating part of the Gilman experience for decades, many alumni report that their Encounters were formative experiences. The aim is to give students a taste of life outside Gilman and whet interest in college study and career opportunities.


Senior Encounter for the 2018-19 school year runs from Tuesday, May 21 through Tuesday, June 4, 2019.

calendar icon

Two-week Encounter immediately after Senior Exams

Clock icon

Seven on-site work hours each day

Cogs icon

Any occupation is open for Encounter

checklist icon

Student-designed, project-based experiences

types of encounters

Encounters can involve participation in any occupation, e.g. business, law, finance, the arts, medicine, public service, media, government, the environment, and academics ranging from pre-school teaching to sophisticated research. Students have worked with veterinarians, equity analysts, business owners, social media professionals, assistant public defenders, doctors, nutritionists, architects, traffic engineers, school directors, non-profit executives, sports team managers, consultants, and more. Any project that is feasible, well planned, serious in purpose, and closely supervised by an adult Partner who works in that field and can sponsor the student in the workplace, will be considered.

What Seniors Say About Encounter

Although short, my time working at PHR gave me insight to what I want to do in my life. Entering encounter, I knew I wanted to be an engineer; while that hasn’t changed since my first day I have found something else I’m interested in. I thoroughly enjoyed my time at PHR and I felt as if my work wasn’t just me being productive for the sake of being productive, but my productivity translated to a positive impact on someone’s life. Now I know I want to be an engineer, but I also want to continue the work I started here at PHR, I just need to find a way to do both.

MENTOr: Park Heights Renaissance

I learned much about American history during my time transcribing oral interviews, and what I learned excited me. I was listening to an interview conducted with an almost 100-year-old man about what life was like when he was three years old. His memories extended back before 1927, and he remembers stories that bring information from even further back. The digs that we went on added to our knowledge of Catoctin Furnace, which smelted raw pig iron for the American Revolution and during the Civil War. I came into the archaeology firm not knowing what to expect, but I left having discovered a new interest. I will definitely keep Archaeology as an option for a future profession.

MENTOr: EAC Archaeology

My encounter experience reinforced my interest in becoming a Physical Therapist. I was pretty sure before this experience that I would pursue Physical Therapy, but after this, I am almost 100% going to pursue this as a career option. This type of work is service to the public, and it is enjoyable as well. The Therapists I met were all wonderful, funny people, dedicated to their helping their patients become pain free, and return to their normal lives.

My favorite part of the encounter, and really the reason I am interested in a career in Physical Therapy is because of the connections that you form with the patients. While I was working, I would always talk to the patients and they would talk to me about all kinds of stuff from what are you having to lunch today to where are you going to College. It was so nice to have conversations with them and since most of the patients were older, I know they enjoyed that I loved talking to them.

MENTOr: Mady & Mules Physical Therapy

I am so thankful for this opportunity [working with Head Coach John Harbaugh and Assistant Coach Dan Parsons], and even though I may not go into football, I will certainly take what I learned in regards to leadership and team organization, which has always been a passion of mine, and carry it with me moving forward.

MENTOr: Ravens

During my senior encounter, I shadowed Mark Dewire, the chief solicitor for the Department of Law in city hall. He provides legal counsel to the mayor, the mayor’s staff, and the Baltimore City Police Department. Not only did he teach me the basic principles of law, but he also showed me how widespread changes occur in a city and their effect on the police department...Overall, from my experience I learned so much about the system of law, how change occurs in a government, and what the Baltimore City Police Department is doing to change their methods of policing.

MENTOr: Baltimore City Department of Law

Photo courtesy of Cynosure

How You Can Help

The Senior Encounter is a wonderful opportunity for alumni, parents, and friends to mentor a young adult and teach him about the work that you do.

If you, or someone within your organization, would be willing to supervise a senior for the two-week Encounter program, please complete the short form below.

Senior Encounter for the 2018-19 school year runs from Tuesday, May 21 through Tuesday, June 4, 2019.

If you have any questions, please contact Anna Follensbee, Director of the Encounter Program, at afollensbee@gilman.edu or 410-323-3800 x307.