This is me, circa 2006. Within a few years of this photo, I had lost my mother, moved to a new city, transferred schools and gained a brother and sister. My life was absolute chaos and I, at 11, was woefully unprepared to deal with it.
In this time of flux and uncertainty, one thing remained constant- I have never in my life thought, even for a second, that Hanger Hall was the wrong place for me. There were times when I hated my classmates, my teachers, my grades, etc. But I am not sure I could have survived my early teens without Hanger Hall.
An eccentric, loving man and his band of smart, inspiring women taught me how to love myself while I was reeling from the guilt that accompanies a parent’s death. They showed me I was smart when I didn’t believe it, that I had potential and they convinced me that I could do great things in this world. My teachers and classmates pushed me to my intellectual and emotional limits only to extend the hand that kept me from falling over the edge.
I will always credit my hardest, most critical teacher for igniting the competitive (sometimes argumentative) fire inside of me that still drives me and defines me to my teachers and peers. There were days I felt this teacher hated me, and there were days I thought I hated her, but looking back I am floored by the love that was required of her in both pushing me so hard and supporting me so much.
I could go on for days about how all girls schooling, uniforms, small classes and community are all vital to education (especially for girls), but I don’t need to- because Hanger Hall exists. The vision of one man who wanted more for his daughters has become a haven for so many girls who don’t know how to express their potential.
There are no words to express my gratitude and love for Hanger Hall, all I can do is spread the word about this incredible place and hope more schools take a page from their book. Hanger Hall saved and changed my life and I was privileged to go there.
*Excuse the editing, we were in middle school after all.