World of Words: Rawson Scheinberg ’15
Rawson Scheinberg ’15 has been drawn to wordplay since he was a sixth grader at Greenhills. But it didn’t always come easy for him. In fact, words proved to be a struggle for Scheinberg from a young age.
The week after Thanksgiving 2022, Scheinberg visited Greenhills to speak with the entire middle school about his lifelong love of word puzzles, how puzzles build mental fitness by slowing us down, and his recent claim to fame on NPR’s Sunday Puzzle show with Will Shortz. Touching on his time at Greenhills, Scheinberg discussed how he turned his reading challenges into a word-puzzle strength and made a point of encouraging all students to talk to someone—a family member, teacher, or friend—if you can’t solve a problem on your own.
“The Greenhills community inherently wants to help you find the assistance you need,” Scheinberg said. “Though I appeared relatively collected and successful on the exterior, I was having trouble.”
“I can date my interest in word puzzles to the realization that I tended to read words differently than others. My family was always interested in crosswords and other word games, and at Greenhills I was introduced to word puzzle platforms as an outlet. It clicked, and I ended up turning a setback into a benefit that has become a constant in my life ever since.”
Growing up in Northville, Scheinberg knew he was destined to attend Greenhills, since his two older sisters, Nina ’11 and Marnie ’08, were already students.
“My sisters loved Greenhills, and I found that the small class sizes helped me build wonderful relationships with my teachers and foster new friendships,” said Scheinberg.
“I’ve always been a very competitive person, and Greenhills was great for me, because academically it really challenged me, when I hadn’t been before. I was in a room with other smart kids, and the faculty knew how to structure and present material that created a rewarding environment.”
He credits Latin with being both his most difficult class at Greenhills, as well as the one that helped him the most with his budding puzzle habit.
In addition to schoolwork, Scheinberg enjoyed participating in the Gryphon Ambassadors program as a way to give back and an opportunity to articulate the special nature of the Greenhills experience with prospective families.
Sports also played a major role for Scheinberg at Greenhills. He was captain of his senior-year varsity baseball and basketball teams and went on to play baseball at Kenyon College, where he also served as team captain and majored in economics.
“Greenhills taught us how to be rigorous and creative thinkers, how to identify a variety of solutions to daunting problems, and how to recognize the big picture and the beauty in the process,” he continued. “That has served me well in college, on the baseball field, and in my professional life.”
Today, Scheinberg leads a team of Caterpillar heavy equipment technicians in Novi, Michigan, focusing on continuous improvement processes, innovation, and customer communications.
“Greenhills was the first place I was taught how to be a good teammate and began to develop priceless leadership skills,” he shared. “When I’m not at work, I’m vaulting off the treadmill in the middle of a workout—some of the best word puzzles just jump out at you and you don’t want to forget them. The world of words will always be a huge part of my daily life!”