This week, Alexa Masters ’07, World Language teacher shares her perspective on the Academy experience.
Who comes to mind when you think of a “global steward”? Perhaps Jane Goodall or David Attenborough? Some believe that these changemakers are global stewards simply from their worldly successes. Personally, I don’t believe that is the case. Their successes came from their shared traits of foresight, grit, and consistency while working toward their respective visions. But the true mark of a global steward is one commonly employed skill… Perspective.
Yes, employing perspective is a skill. Being a global steward requires not just the acknowledgement, but the utilization of a perspective beyond our own privilege and experience. It may seem simple enough in writing, but true changemakers are aware. They pay attention to the details, they listen to the unheard voices, they recognize the patterns, the cause and effect, and they consider the experiences of others first.
Once you are truly aware you can act with purpose. A global changemaker acts with the purpose to better their immediate community and beyond. They see the injustices and work with purpose toward a more sustainable life for all.
The Academy’s culture fosters a sense of global stewardship. Our Sacred Heart Goals and Criteria, our traditions, and our mission attract members that are kind-hearted and dedicated to the improvement of their communities beyond these walls. As an alumna of the Academy, I can say the skill of engaging with a perspective outside of my own experience was taught and reinforced in so many ways. Through curriculum, through service, and often by example I was taught what it means to put your privilege aside, consider another’s perspective, contemplate the consequences of my actions and create equitable solutions to problems — from social awareness taught in Primary to global awareness in Middle School. Every Academy student past and present is acutely aware of the effects their choices have on themselves and others. They are considerate, contemplative, and responsible in their actions.
I love this image because I think it accurately portrays the way an Academy student thinks about, and solves, a problem. Academy students recognize the difference between equality and equity. Through the Academy experience we all come to understand that justice is the true goal. In every chair in my classroom sits a future changemaker. I know this because in every classroom . . .
- Academy students are asked to work toward a vision for the future.
- Academy students are asked to recognize the impacts of their actions.
- Academy students are asked to identify the spaces of inequity, the unsustainable practices and the injustices occurring around them.
- Academy students are taught to not only seek but hold meaningful conversations.
- Academy students are taught perseverance in adversarial moments.
- Academy students act with their whole heart.
- Academy students are true global stewards.