• Brearley

Linda Rosenthal Maness ‘77

March 2019

Red or White: White

Favorite book(s) you read as a student: Biographies, and later, Hemingway 

Favorite assembly, tradition or song: Carol singing in the Main Lobby and the Fathers’ Chorus at Christmas Assembly

A rule you always followed…or didn’t: I was pretty good at being quiet whenever required. BUT, I was a gum chewer!

Memorable school experiences: Earning athletic awards ... the Brearley Seal and numerals. Running for Head of the Athletic Association (I lost to a good friend). Our Class VII Musical: Gilbert and Sullivan’s Trial by Jury.

How your Brearley education has influenced your life: I struggled with reading as a young student. I had reading help in 2nd grade, and Library class was torturous—until I discovered biographies. I really liked non-fiction. And that is true today. I prefer non-fiction and historical fiction! My Senior project was journalism. I attended events all over Manhattan and wrote them up, then submitted them to Mrs. Ruth Carpenter for her review and critique. I thoroughly enjoyed our weekly sessions. We’d talk about how to “get to the point,” and thanks to Mrs. C I became a stronger writer. Fast forward to 1998, when I joined a weekly newspaper staff in southern Vermont. As a correspondent, I was given assignments, but I also had the freedom to choose topics for writing columns: education, sports and the local arts scene. I was the “go-to” writer for interviews of visiting authors (Pat Conroy, Chris Bohjalian), musicians (Sheila E.) and a variety of movie/theatre personalities (Robert Altman, Kitty Carlisle, Celeste Holm, Alan Alda) et al. My Senior project turned into Real Life work!

Further thoughts: Intertwined with the newspaper and PR writing were 12 years of being a 1:1 special education paraeducator. I feel my own childhood experience of having difficulties with reading has been invaluable when relating to the students I work with in grades K-6. I truly believe my Brearley education has been a cornerstone in my life. Having patience, maintaining a “never give up” attitude and receiving firm but genuine support were all part of my 13 Brearley years. I believe I have shared these values at home and at work!
 
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