In her junior speech delivered on January 22, Monica Pan '19 shared a personal story about how she learned to embrace her "foolishness" and grow in confidence.
As part of the Saint Mary's School Social Impact Week, seniors Ginsy Barnes '18 and Reagan Massey '18 delivered the Word of the Day in Chapel on January 16, 2018. Here's what they had to say:
Ginsy: Social justice. I wonder what assumptions were made as soon as I said those words? Does it mean I've retweeted a Vice News link or regularly attend Moral Monday? Nowadays I really don't know. Some of you may have even stopped listening when I said social justice. This is a part of the problem. The over use of social justice has made the meaning become convoluted and the impact of the words has decreased. In reality, social justice or "being woke" sometimes has negative connotations such as being self-serving or having a mob mentality. Overall, the negativity surrounding social justice has clouded the true purpose of it, which is creating positive change and spreading awareness. For this reason, social impact is much more fitting for our community and this speech.
In Mary Ashburn Mann's address to the Class of 2017 during commencement last May, the 2017 senior class speaker said, "I hope that I can speak on behalf of everyone when I say that, in one way or another, Saint Mary's has provided us with the confidence to step out of our comfort zone and truly be the best version of ourselves. I am an illustration of this point – when I came to Saint Mary's you never would have caught me on stage, speaking in public but now, here I am, sharing our story in front of strangers and best friends, alike." We caught up with Mary Ashburn, now in her second semester at North Carolina State University's College of Textiles, to ask her a few questions about her Saint Mary's experience for our sms.edu blog.
Once, while I was visiting in the United Kingdom, I met someone who was kind enough to invite me into her home for a cup of tea. Her house was not... orderly, shall we say. Piles of papers and stacks of dishes were everywhere. The chaos did not faze my host in the least. She cleared a spot on the couch for me, and we had a lovely conversation. Though she wasn't what I would describe as ready, though she wasn't prepared by my definition, she let me in anyhow.
Earlier this month, I wrote to our parents about preparation in general and particularly during the Advent season. But you know what? Sometimes whatever we've been preparing for comes, and we're not quite ready yet.
I've been at Saint Mary's for 25 years. When started, I taught in both the college as well as the high school, and my way of presenting the material was pretty much the same in both levels. In other words, it was straight lecture, the same way I had taught my classes at N.C. State for the five years before I came to Saint Mary's. It was also the same way I had been taught as an undergrad and graduate student when I was in college in the early 80s. All of this took place, of course, in those long-ago days before the Internet Revolution.