In an insightful and eye-opening presentation to St. Margaret’s professional community and student leaders this week, Dr. Beth-Sarah Wright talked extensively about “the gap” – a difference, small or large, between how people portray themselves to others, and who they are authentically.
“I’m really interested in that gap,” Dr. Wright said.
Dr. Wright presented to the professional community during their official opening meetings ahead of the start of classes next week. She is an educator and author with a lifelong Episcopal background, and her presentation to the professional community and student leaders focused on dignity and its role in creating a community comprised of individuals who are their authentic selves.
A former college professor at New York University and Spelman College, Dr. Wright currently serves as the director of enrollment management at Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School in Atlanta, and as an adjunct assistant professor in the department of psychiatry at Emory School of Medicine.
Her latest book DIGNITY: Seven Strategies for Creating Authentic Community, was inspired by a question in the Episcopal Baptismal covenant: Will you strive to respect the dignity of every human being?
Using powerful words and storytelling (“the currency for dignity” according to Dr. Wright) she shared seven actionable tenets of the “dignity lens” which are designed to help identify an organization’s purpose, articulate aspirations, and equip one’s self for the opportunities and challenges of honoring a school’s Mission.
St. Margaret’s Mission and Core Values are rooted in its Episcopal Identity that calls on the institution to strive for justice and peace among all people, and Dr. Wright noted that St. Margaret’s aligned well with its Episcopal identity and values.
Dr. Wright’s seven tenets are:
In addition to a presentation to St. Margaret’s professional community, Dr. Wright also met with student leaders from the Upper School’s seven leadership groups and their professional community leaders--Admission Ambassadors, Associated Student Body (ASB), Honor Committee, Peer Counselors, Tartan Tutors, Tartan Inclusivity and Diversity Education (TIDE), and Yearbook—as well as grade 8 student council members, to talk about dignity and leading an authentic community.
It was one of many activities during a busy week on campus, as St. Margaret’s professional community prepares for the 2022-2023 school year. In addition to orientation, training and other activities to start the year, divisions also met separately to plan and prepare for the year ahead, including meetings around academic, health and well-being and strategic priorities.
School begins on Wednesday, Aug. 24 for Upper School, Middle School and Lower School, with the Early Childhood School starting Monday, Aug. 29.