A Bunch of Characters
Sophomores explore character during QUEST.
At Pomfret, everyone has their own strengths, such as creativity, kindness, bravery, honesty, and leadership. Their personalities range from analysts and diplomats to sentinels and explorers. And during the first QUEST session of the year, sophomores had the opportunity to identify their character strengths and personality traits to help them better understand themselves and one another.
During the exercise, sophomores learned about the twenty-four strengths that make up an individual’s personality. According to the VIA Institute of Character, everyone possesses all of the traits, and what makes each of us unique is the different degrees to which we embody these traits. In small groups led by QUEST student leaders, they reviewed the strengths and identified those they believe they possessed.
Kylie Corrigan ’25, who identified fairness, love, and prudence as her top three character traits, said, “I enjoyed discussing the strengths with everyone and really learning more about my classmates and how they see themselves.” She also enjoyed learning about the personalities each person was assigned.
Sophomores used an assessment developed by NERIS Analytics Limited, similar to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator instrument, to explore their personalities. They were matched with a role based on how they answered questions on mind, energy, nature, tactics, and identity. A group of extraordinarily caring and social people always eager to help were named consuls (ESFJ-A / ESFJ-T). Those innovative inventors with an unquenchable thirst for knowledge were named logicians (INTP-A / INTP-T). Regardless of their role, students discussed ways they were similar and different as they strategized how best to work together.
The exercise concluded with a friendly game of Sharks and Minnows that relied on character strengths such as honesty, teamwork, zest, and bravery to make it from one side of the turf field to the other without getting tagged.
Sophomores play Sharks and Minnows.
“My favorite QUEST activity that I have been a part of during my time on the Hilltop is the Sharks and Minnows game,” says Liam Ventresca ’24, a QUEST student-leader. As a campaigner (ENFP-A / ENFP-T) — an enthusiastic, creative, and sociable free spirit who can always find a reason to smile — Liam loves the opportunity to lead the tag game, make jokes, and see all the different personality types having fun together.
While the sophomores explored character, freshmen built community; juniors examined diversity, equity, and inclusion; and seniors focused on health and wellbeing. These four pillars make up the QUEST program — the cornerstone of our signature student life curriculum — and the sessions equip our students with the skills, values, perspectives, and habits of mind required to thrive in a world that is constantly changing.