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Equity and Belonging at Proctor

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  • What we Believe

    Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion are not new ideals in Proctor’s history. As Proctor alumna, Emily White Hat ‘94’ says about most independent schools, “They want us to be us until we are us,” Proctor reverses that notion that we create one type of student. A “locked-in amber” portrait of a graduate that might exist at any school. We want students to not only bring their whole selves to the school, but we also want them to explore the beauty, messiness, and bounty that comes with being the people and age they uniquely are.

An Ubuntic Community Built on Relationships

In the last few decades, Proctor has evolved into a community that values the relationship between every individual, one another, and the natural world. There is something that cannot be described with words and can only be felt when you walk the paths and hallways of Proctor; we call this “Proctor Magic.” Proctor values the relationships and bonds created across the school and nurtures an environment where everyone feels welcome and, as a result, feels compelled to bring their whole selves to the school. This is felt in the small family-style dorms,  experiential classrooms, collegial afternoon activities, and innovative off-campus programs. The adults who steward this community are committed to continued learning and growth to become interculturally competent individuals who nurture a safe and healthy learning community. 

Proctor truly believes that every community member must be valued and accorded the environment to thrive. Proctor Academy borrowed from the Ubuntu philosophy to guide the work of building belonging because it recognized that when a community calls everyone in and creates a space for a conversation to address our shared humanity, we can build bridges for stronger relationships. These relationships are glued together by empathy and compassion for each other, especially those most marginalized, resulting in the healthiest community possible.

Our Journey Together

The Office of Equity and Belonging reimagined in 2022 is primarily responsible for supporting and advancing a school culture of inclusion of diverse perspectives, applying an equity lens to decision making, and promoting the nurturing of belonging for everyone. 

Our ‘journey together’ is stewarded by our Dean of Equity and Belonging, Will Wamaru in partnership with the Head of School, and Director of the Native Program Lori Patriacca. The office’s mission is guided by the school’s mission and embraces strategies and best practices for building a culturally competent community to enhance the creation of exceptional student experiences and nurture belonging for all students. 

Focus Areas 
  • Student experience support and engagement 
  • Employee experience and professional development 
  • Community learning and stewarding a culture of belonging 

Key Initiatives 
  • Intercultural Development Index for employees to track and support growth in cross-cultural competence. 
  • Restorative Justice Practices build a cohesive community with accountability and compassion. 
  • Gender and Sexuality Support Plan for students to affirm their identity and support them to thrive. 
  • Professional Development for teaching and non-teaching staff to build foundational racial and gender literacies for compassionate pedagogy. 
  • Balanced Scorecard for Culturally Responsive Teaching.

Mission and Vision

Proctor nurtures students to become positive change agents by intentionally designing programs and systems that unlock opportunities for individuals to understand and expand their identities within an interculturally competent and caring community. Similarly, Proctor cultivates and commits resources to ensure greater access and belonging to the Proctor experience for those farthest from opportunity.

A caring & connected community where all students and adults feel a sense of belonging.

Program Initiatives

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Upcoming Events:

  • October 15 | Indigenous People's Day Celebration
  • October 12-November 8 | Native American Heritage Month 
  • October 29 I Emily Bernard to Discuss her book Black is the Body
  • December 3-6 | NAIS People of Color Conference & Student Diversity Leadership Conference
  • July 2020 | South Dakota Summer Service Trip
  • August 2020 | South Dakota Faculty & Staff Professional Development Trip

Equity and Belonging Team

List of 2 members.

  • Photo of William Wamaru

    William "Will" Wamaru 

    Proctor Academy
    Dean of Equity and Belonging
  • Photo of Lori Patriacca

    Lori Patriacca 01

    Proctor Academy
    Learning Specialist / Native American Program Director/Assistant Equity and Belonging Director/Dorm
    Harvard Graduate School of Education - Ed. M.
    Gettysburg College - B.A.

Updates from the Office of Equity and Belonging

List of 7 news stories.

  • Indigenous People's Day 2021 & A Visit with John Around Him

    Lori Patriacca
    Read or listen to the latest blog on the Buzz, The Journey: The Danger of a Single Story, to hear about John Around Him's connection to Proctor, his recent visit, and Proctor's celebration of Indigenous People's Day and Native American Heritage Month.
  • Native American Heritage Month 2021 Schedule

    Lori Patriacca
  • Earth Day

    Lori Patriacca
    JR White Hat (2000) joined Proctor to celebrate Earth Day 2016.  Please enjoy Scott Allenby’s description of Earth Day and reflections from Mike Henriques in Mike’s Notes to get a taste of what we celebrated and what we are carrying forward.
  • Speaker Series: S.C. Says

    Lori Patriacca
    Such an honor to welcome slam poet S.C. Says to a virtual all-school assembly tonight. His message of intentional empathy as a learned skill hits hard. “Empathy is the active ingredient in conflict resolution...It fires neurons and energizes us when we exercise it to other people...It requires us to talk about our chips, our flaws, and cracks.” How can we make sure having a dialogue is no longer a novelty?

    1) Pay attention to each other.
    2) Be willing to let other people show empathy to you by telling your real story.
    3) Do not abstain the differences, appreciate them.

    If you want to change the world around you, understand the people in it.
  • Dr. MLK Jr Day Celebration 2021

    Lori Patriacca
    We welcomed poet and storyteller Mia S Willis to our virtual stage for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and wow. They are incredible. Read more about the day HERE.
  • Mike's Notes: An Institutional Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

    Mike Henriques
    Education is not simply the act of becoming aware. It is about the capacity to take knowledge that comes with expanded awareness and evolving it into action and meaningful changes that are value driven, rooted in decency and hope. I look forward to continuing this work and doing more together. Read more HERE.
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  • Juneteenth: We Must KEEP Talking About Race

    Scott Allenby
    Our hope is that Juneteenth will become a celebration of independence across America and in our schools not just this year, but every year into the future. We must actively help rebuild and reshape a society that works toward freedom without delay, without exceptions, without excuses. Read more HERE.
    Read More
Located in  Andover, NH,  Proctor Academy is a private coeducational day and boarding school for grades 912. Students benefit from a rigorous academic program, experiential off-campus programs, fine and performing arts, competitive athletics, and a wide selection of extracurricular activities.
204 Main Street  .  PO Box 500  .  Andover, NH 03216
p. (603) 735-6000   f. (603) 735-6300   webmaster@proctoracademy.org