Despite volatile fuel prices, varied access to clean water, fresh fruits, vegetables, and grain, for most of us, our most scarce commodity is time. Competing responsibilities constantly claw away at it until we are left with precious few minutes of time for intentional allocation. With mid-August’s arrival, educators and students around the country experience an amplified sense of time scarcity as summer bucket lists feel just a bit more urgent.
All relationships need nurturing, and Proctor’s 2022 South Dakota Summer Service Trip strengthened our Rosebud connections. Fourteen students and three of us as faculty leaders learned so much through painting and sprucing up a community center in brutal heat, jostling in the back of pickup trucks in search of a buffalo herd, working at an equine therapy ranch and riding horses, and sharing cool evening meals in our campsite. We all came away with a better understanding of ourselves and our country through observing life on the Rosebud Reservation. Below are some of our experiences.
This week, we are in the midst of conversations with a group of young alumni for our upcoming edition of the Proctor Magazine. Each of these alumni are entering the heart of their career. Some are in health care, others working for nonprofits, others teaching, and yet others running startups. While their experiences and career paths vary, they uniformly assert that Proctor served a powerful role in shaping who they are as adults.
In just over a month, Proctor’s 120 new students will head into the wilderness of the New Hampshire’s White Mountains for five days of backpacking, camping, and exploring. The experience that awaits them - the vastness of the wilderness, the challenges of hiking high peaks, and the relationships forged with classmates and faculty leaders - will lay the foundation for their Proctor journey.
Understanding ourselves is the first step to understanding how to do your best work. As adults, we are cognizant of the environment needed for us to be our best: level of ideal structure, types of colleagues who complement us best, independence, clear guidance. We learn this overtime, throughout different professional experiences. But what about our students? How do we help them understand the conditions needed for them to do their best work, and are we providing an environment in which they can thrive as self-aware, curious, inquisitive, self-advocating learners?
Roughly 25% of Proctor's students live locally and make the commute to Proctor's campus each day. While day students take part in study hall, eat meals in the dining hall, attend extra help sessions in the evening, participate in all campus activities, and have access to all Proctor has to offer, life as a day student differs from those of boarding students.
Our motto, more than 80s years old, combines two simple sentences that define all that we do as a school: Live to Learn. Learn to Live. The first phrase is a mindset we try to instill in each of our students. The second is a call to action for us as educators in our work preparing experiences for our students.