It’s a question I dreaded hearing while I was growing up. And, if I’m honest, it’s a question I still hate as an adult.
I love learning – I always have
and suspect I always will. Give me a new book to read, a new concept to learn, or a new skill to build, and I am a happy woman. Do I have to commit to one area of expertise? Do we really have to pigeon-hole ourselves into one area of interest?
My name is Megan Graham (formerly Wittmann), and I have had the honor of serving as the Director of The Gilman Study and am now CCLP Director of ParishBridge & Director of ParishInspire. Growing up my love for learning manifested itself as a love for our local library as well as a passion for a variety of classes and extracurricular activities. I spent my summers throughout Middle and Upper School working at day camps where I had the opportunity to learn and teach students a wide variety of different skills (I mean, you never know when those archery sessions will come in handy, right?!) In choosing a college, I made sure to pick a liberal arts school. A school which prioritizes learning a variety of subjects? Right up my alley… I studied abroad and traveled extensively because of the desire to learn about what life is like within other cultures and areas of the world. I double majored in college and went on to get two graduate degrees. It is no coincidence that I’ve chosen to spend my life in schools – institutions dedicated to teaching and learning.
The Gilman Study was created with a variety of aspirations in mind. The Study serves as a physical place which houses Parish’s Lab and Link student support programs. It serves as an umbrella to Parish Virtual and to our academic offerings in Parish Extend and Parish Summer. More than that, The Study serves as an engine for personalized programming for our students, our alumni, our parents, and our faculty and staff, and is even available to community members and peers outside the Parish walls. The job description for the Director of The Study is “to oversee and curate personal and professional growth opportunities for all constituents of Parish Episcopal School.” The purpose of The Study is to provide personal and professional development opportunities to learners of all ages – talk about the fruition of my dreams!
Within The Study, we aspire to create programming which serves as enrichment for our current students and alumni, as well as educators and parents both affiliated with Parish and beyond. We hope the programming within The Study will be so varied and engaging that it both helps and hinders people in the process of discovering “who they want to be when they grow up.” I see The Study as a place where people can hone new skills, explore new topics or areas of interest, and have real-time access to the help they need. Want to learn about your Clifton Strengths and how you can leverage them in your daily and professional life? Need help creating unique centerpieces for your holiday table? Have you always wanted to know how to really use your cell phone’s camera to take pictures you’ll want to frame forever? Little interests, big passions, ways to itch curiosity… we want The Study to be the place where people come to learn something new, to discover more about themselves, and where people leave feeling enriched.
As The Study begins to develop new programming, we want to hear from you! What offerings would you like to participate in? What do you need? What does your child need? What is something you’d love to try? Please reach out to us with your wishlist… what would you love to see us offer? Anything from financial literacy to book clubs – everything is on the table. We want to develop programming with your actual needs/desires in mind – so please share and contact us below.
Our goal is the blog will serve as a place where you’ll ponder something new and where a new interest may be sparked. We will document our journey not only with The Study but with all the Parish Plus programs and introduce you to the people we’ll meet along the way. We anticipate many posts being co-authored so that you can hear from both participants and providers. Our hope is that by sharing the “why” and the joy associated with our offerings, that you’ll be inspired to join us and to let us know what new offerings would be of benefit. We look forward to learning with you!