“The high school years are just amazing. They have so much energy and interest in the world and in being genuine to who they are.”
My husband Keith and I came to High Mowing in the early 90’s. He began by teaching Life Sciences and went on to create the School’s Naturalist program. The possibilities and freedom of a non-traditional high school appealed to us. We had three children and we wanted a creative education for them. We were attracted to High Mowing because of the beautiful, rural location, the small, creative community where we felt we could make our home, and the ideals of the school’s founder, Mrs. Emmet.
I came to love the school community and to feel very much at home here. It was a magical place to be in those years and our family thrived. In the early years I worked in the library and volunteered to help students with an environmental club and peace and social justice activities of the David Anderson Cabin. In the meantime, I had become a certified Herbalist and began teaching classes in Botany and wild plant identification and uses. My relationships with the students and engaging with the school’s curriculum led me to the work that I do now as college and career advisor, which I began in 2000.
I love that I can work with students in a number of capacities and see them in many different environments. In addition to the college and career planning seminars and individual meetings, I work with groups of students in the field learning about indigenous wild plants and how to use them for food and medicine. Knowing them in this other, more earthly way enriches the possibilities for advising work, which I find deeply satisfying.
Recently I spent two weeks in England with a group of juniors and seniors walking in the footsteps of Beatrix Potter, an amazing woman whose conservation efforts helped to create the Lake District National Park in Northern England. It was a wonderful opportunity to be in nature and allow our students time to observe the natural beauty around them—and their own inner ‘landscape.’ It was a significant moment for me to see how they were affected by such a journey.
An earlier month-long journey walking the River Thames with students from the sea to the source was a bit more challenging --but just as illuminating. We were there during a particularly wet time when the river was flooding. Conditions were quite difficult at times, but the group remained inspired.
I think this is an important idea—that young people be allowed this type of time. It can be very helpful to seniors and juniors who are looking forward to what they want to do with their futures, so they can take more hold of their own choices and be less influenced by society or others.
It is a privilege to travel and learn with these young people and to be with them as they begin to plan for their future. I am reminded daily that the high school years are just amazing. They have so much energy and interest in the world and in being genuine to who they are. I also love the humor they bring to everything -so important in making life enjoyable. I am very much inspired by their energy and enthusiasm for life. They are the best companions!
Plymouth State College, BS, Interdisciplinary/Sociology and Anthropology and English
Defense Information School, United States Air Force, Information Specialist/Journalism Certificate,
National Career Development Association, Career Development Facilitator Training (NCDA),
Center for Credential & Education, Global Career Development Credential (GCDF),
Sage Mountain Herbal Retreat Center, Spirit and Essence of Herbs Apprentice Program,
Sage Mountain Herbal Retreat CenterCertified Advanced Herbalist, University of New Hampshire Professional Coaching Certificate Program (in progress)