Riverdale Country School

Mind • Character • Community

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Upper School News & Stories

"Why Learn?" A New Speaker Series Debuts
Posted 09/15/2016 06:37PM

As Riverdale settled into the second week of classes, the Upper School gathered for a special assembly today devoted to the purpose of learning. 

Shelby Stokes, a member of the English faculty, described how taking risks, resisting the status quo, and examining one's own vulnerability can lead to self-actualization.

"Are you using your education at RCS to cultivate your potential for the deepest form of growth and self-knowledge," she asked, "or are you only trying to produce a perfect transcript?"

The greatest personal rewards come through taking risks, she said, and with risk comes the possibility for disappointment. "The thing about risk taking is that it requires us to be vulnerable," she said. "There is a productive suffering we experience in these moments of discomfort when our old defenses and habits are challenged and we can no longer rely on what might have served us or led us to be successful in the past. Grappling with this discomfort, getting curious about its implications, is for me at the core of why we learn."

The "Why Learn?" lecture series is expected to become an annual event featuring members of the Riverdale faculty who address the purpose and meaning of a Riverdale education. 

 

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