New Mission

New Mission


My idea is to explore how other countries around the world are dealing with education and special education issues. I’d like to see different successful schools, wherever they may be, up close. I’d like to sit down with directors and administrators. I’d like to speak with government officials who keep a pulse on the education affairs of their communities. I want to learn more about education around the globe through speaking with locals, seeing the schools, and shaking hands with the people responsible for implementing the systems. If you know of any outstanding (public or private) special needs schools in other parts of the world, I’d love to hear about them. If you know any education experts from around the world, I’d love to be introduced to them. Please do not hesitate to share your thoughts or ideas. Read more about my mission.

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Sunday, March 26, 2017

Dear Evan Hansen

I've seen Dear Evan Hansen twice so far (off-Broadway when it debuted, and recently on Broadway).  Without giving anything away, the show revolves around a high school boy trying to find himself and deals with important issues concerning identity, self-esteem, and fitting in.  I enjoyed the show immensely both times but I have been struggling to put my finger on why the show has affected me so profoundly on both a personal and professional level.  

On a personal level, I think it conjures up memories of teenage angst.  I wince sometimes when I think about how much "fitting in" mattered in high school.  How much your identity was wrapped up in who your friends were and how they perceived you.  I remember my own angst and anxiety and feeling a sense of helplessness in figuring out how to cope with them.

Most people are able to emerge from that place of teenage angst.  They strengthen their sense of self, learn how to self-advocate and cope, and find themselves eventually.  But some don't.  And sometimes the feeling of being overwhelmed by angst, anxiety, disconnection, and despair can be so crippling that it results in tragedy.  Dear Evan Hansen confronts that fact.

On a professional level, I think the show reinforced my commitment to my work.  As an attorney who represents individuals with special needs, I am fortunate to be in a position to be able to help people who struggle with the kinds of emotional and social issues that are central to Dear Evan Hansen by assisting them in obtaining the kinds of supports/services that can help them address their challenges and learn how to move forward.

Dear Evan Hansen connected with my childhood self as well as my adult self.  The result was a powerful experience that has left a lasting impression.  Thank you Ben Platt and the rest of the incredible Dear Evan Hansen cast for bringing this story to the stage.