05/31/2018 by Carney Sandoe Staff |

“You Can” Faculty Feature: Heather and Dyann

Heather and Dyann Stay connected with CS&A

For the past several weeks, we've been spotlighting members of our Women's Institute honorary faculty group that will be leading professional development panels throughout the day. We hope you have been enjoying getting to know them as much as we have!

With the Institute next week on Friday, June 8 in Boston, we're excited to introduce two more of those faculty members. Be sure to hurry and register for our Institute today! All educators or allies of women in education are welcome.

Heather WoodcockHeather Woodcock

-Director of the Associate Teacher Program, Belmont Day School (MA)
-Former 7th grade teacher, mentor teacher, and Assistant Director at Shady Hill School (MA)
-Former English teacher at The Putney School (VT)

What advice would you give a woman who is trying to advance her career in education?

The advice I’d give to any woman hoping to advance her career in education is to assume that you know more and can do more than you think you can. In other words, trust your own voice and perspective and use both to improve and expand the ways schools operate and serve children. A key moment for me occurred last year when I attended CS&A's Women’s Institute and got the chance to spend time with and hear from so many women in education who were in leadership positions. I was inspired to take my own steps towards a leadership role that had long been on my mind, but for some reason wasn’t happening. It was the nudge I needed!

What is the best piece of advice you have received?

One of the best pieces of advice I ever received was the importance of thinking about intent, impact and perspective taking when working with others. I’ve learned to ask for feedback often and take it openly. I try my best to assume the best of intentions in others, and I find myself returning every day to why I chose to work in schools in the first place; I admire children and enjoy the time I get to spend with them.

Dyann Connor headshotDyann Connor

-Director of Social Justice, Tower Hill School (DE)
-30 years of experience in independent schools teaching science, math, and literacy
-Served as Lower School Reading Coordinator and taught as Middle School Reading Specialist

Who is your female role model?

My grandmother, Oma, has always been one of my role models. Although she has passed away, I remember her sound advice and compelling stories that have taught me valuable lessons about life. Oma survived two world wars while living in Germany before immigrating to the U.S. to start a new life. She cared little for materialistic things and spent her life devoted to her family and doing whatever needed doing — and this made her content. Oma was not able to finish school but she taught herself; she was an avid reader and one of the smartest people I have ever known. Oma raised me to be a strong woman and to never let anyone make me feel less than them. She continues to be my role model!

What is the best piece of advice you have received?

One of the best pieces of advice I've received: “Just be yourself.”

What advice would you give your younger self?

As a biracial girl growing up in a single-parent home in a small Massachusetts town, I learned at an early age that my intersectionality of identities added levels of complexity to learning who I was and who I wanted to be. So the advice I would give my younger self is to always be proud of who you are and to not let the opinions of others strip away your joy.

Read about some of the other faculty members herehere and here, or see the full list of faculty members.

And don't forget to reserve your spot at our Institute today–last year's event sold out!

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