Through weekly on and off-campus internships, volunteer opportunities, and student-led projects at 75 local businesses and nonprofit organizations — and with integration into their daily, on-campus lives — students serve their community, explore areas of career interest, and influence the world around them. Horizons is laid out sequentially: as students move from one year to the next, they build on skills learned earlier in their Horizons work.
In 2015, six students began a new endeavor called "The Power of S.H.E. (Stories Heard Everywhere)." Working as part of the Digital Storytelling class, students captured a sense of what life is like for teenage girls and shared those stories online.
Girls Right the World, launched in 2016, is an international online literary journal advocating for young, female-identified writers. The eleventh grade student editors oversee both Sol, (the MHS art and literary magazine), and Girls Right the World.
Gabriela Keator ’17 wanted her senior Horizons project to be interactive and collaborative. “I’m the complete opposite,” says Mikala L’Hote ’17, who admits to being shy, but she was intrigued by Gabriela’s invitation to develop a project together.
As director of this hallmark MHS program, Alison draws from her extensive experience teaching and mentoring girls, vast knowledge of the local community, and deep desire to develop school-community partnership. She interacts program-wide with over 75 sites that support the service-learning experiences of Miss Hall’s students. She also advises an on-campus group of students called MAPS (Mira’s Alliance for Philanthropic Sustainability). MAPS is an organization at Miss Hall’s School that aims to educate and fundraise in the Miss Hall’s School community and around the world for sustainable philanthropy through micro-lending, micro-grants, and contributions to similar organizations. Additionally, Alison advises the MHS freshwoman class. She is a graduate of the University of Vermont.Contact Ms. Basdekis
Kimberly Boland '94
Horizons Teacher; Co-Coordinator of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Programs
University of Massachusetts - M.B.A. St. Michael's College - B.A.
Kim joined Horizons in 2010 and works with seniors as they intern throughout the Berkshires. Previously, Kim worked eleven years in the MHS Admission Office, serving eight years as Director of Admission & Financial Aid. She coaches JV softball and JV volleyball and is a Faculty Advisor to the School’s Day Students, the Proctor program, and the Essence Club. Kim is a graduate of St. Michael’s College and holds an M.B.A. from the University of Massachusetts. Contact Ms. Boland
Norvelene has been with MHS since 1993 and directs the freshwoman “From Me to We” curriculum, which helps guide girls as they adjust to a new school community and prepare for off-campus work in later years. In addition to her work with the Horizons program, Norvelene is the director of the School’s New Student Orientation Program held each fall. It is not unusual to find her simply enjoying the great outdoors. Contact Ms. Contakos
Akilah Edgerton '00
Sophomore Horizons Advisor; Co-Coordinator of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Programs
North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University - B.S.W. and a Certificate in Global Sudies
Fay advises Horizons juniors and works closely with Director of Horizons Alison Basdekis on initiatives involving the School’s signature program. In that role, Fay partners with over 30 site supervisors throughout Berkshire County, coordinating opportunities for MHS students to volunteer in ways that contribute to building a stronger community. She is the junior class Horizons Advisor. She joined MHS in 2006 and was Associate Director of Admission and Financial Aid prior to joining Horizons in 2010. Fay is a graduate of Bethany College. Contact Ms. Parker
Marian joined the Horizons faculty as Greenhouse Manager in 2013, bringing with her extensive experience in landscape design, horticulture, floral design, and greenhouse management. In her role, Marian works with MHS freshwomen in the Horizons “Greenhouse Business” Program as they run their own business, cultivating seedlings, tracking expenses, and caring for and selling their plants. Marian also advises the sophomores, as they navigate volunteer work through off-campus placements. In addition to her MHS responsibilities, Marian is a garden and landscape designer and a writer. She holds a B.A. in English Literature from Wheaton College. Contact Ms. Rutledge
"I volunteer at Conte Elementary School, where I work in a kindergarten class. My job is to walk the students back and forth from the library, read with them, and help them out with math. The big idea is to keep the kids on task and happy, but all of that is just a job description -- WHAT I REALLY GET TO DO IS GIVE BIG HUGS, be a shoulder to cry on, and be the first person to tell tiny brains about the classic fairy tales and addition. I love what I do."
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