Kathleen Hamilton

Name: Kathleen Hamilton Year graduated: 2013 How many years were you at Green School: 4 years What was your Green Stone title: Wonder Matters

What did you do immediately after Green School?

Immediately after Green School I travelled to Zanzibar with Isami, spent the summer exploring and adventuring, before I moved to San Francisco to start college at San Francisco Art Institute. I became immersed in city life very quickly, and was absolutely enamoured with art classes and college life.

What are you doing now — list jobs, school, extra curricular activities, hobbies, passions, etc?

Now I attend Southern Oregon University where I’m a year away from completing my degree in Sociology and Anthropology. I spend a lot of time outside, and I have a van that I go on roadtrips in – lots of camping and adventures! I spend most of my free time in the art studio, painting and printmaking, and I also have a snake and a lizard at home that I cuddle with when I’m not adventuring or making art. I write poetry, and I’m preparing my college capstone on the role of Artists and Art in Social Movements. I’m a part of the international students association on campus, and do some organising with student government, and I’m heavily involved with social activism, focused on social justice issues.

How did Green School prepare you for your current life?

I hardly know where to start. Green School entirely shaped me in my high-school experience. I am confident now because of my experience at GS, because of the connections I built with peers and teachers, because I was encouraged to self-direct my learning, and how empowered I was during my Green Stone experience… Bali is an experience to begin with, and then Green School just created this incredible environment for me where it was as if I got all of this global experience from within the walls – sorry, from within the jungle! – that was fertilizer on top of the soil. And the best part is, many of my friends from Green School are all over the world now, and I’ve seen a few of them and continue running into these mutual connections all over the place. The community just keeps growing. I’m incredibly grateful for that. Also, all of the concrete skills I learnt, from Nikki’s business class, to Leslie and Nikki’s life skills, and Pak Joel & Chads essay writing and critical thinking are still things I absolutely depend on in college life, and “real life”, out here in the world.

What do you remember most fondly about your Green School experience?

Marimba, dance, yoga, being outdoors. It was just so much fun, and so much of that is owed to the people, and the space. I loved high-school, and it’s pretty great to be able to say that to people out here, where high-school, and schooling in general isn’t understood as something that’s enjoyable. But I loved it, and I think that’s why I want to continue learning, and having fun doing it!

What could Green School have done better to prepare you for the experiences you have had since graduating?

The culture shock was really hard. Leaving Green School was really hard, and looking back, it would’ve been awesome to have some sort of community support after graduating. Like some kind of call every couple of months, or an email, or something. It felt like ripping off a band-aid, and I know that’s not what GS is about. That community support after leaving would’ve been so nice, because it was difficult moving away and having all the people you love so scattered. I hope future graduates know that there’s a community of us out here, and that they can always find support with us. My home is always open to GS alumni and community.

Love you too, sending my love to the jungle! Kathleen

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