The student news site of St. Teresa's Academy


Breaking News
The student news site of St. Teresa's Academy


The student news site of St. Teresa's Academy


Dart News

Around the World

Dr. May-Washington details her recent travels, and the lessons that she has learned through exposure to different cultures, as well as spending time around members of the STA community.

     In the past year, St. Teresa’s Academy president Dr. Siabhan May-Washington has embarked on trips to five different countries and has visited a multitude of cities within them. Throughout her travels, she noted that she has learned many valuable lessons that have shaped her even as an adult.

     During her five-year tenure at STA, May-Washington has taken trips to Paris, Greece, Turkey, New York City, Los Angeles and Italy. Her first trip was with the STA choir to Italy in 2022. She partook in the “shadow tour” of this travel experience, which meant that she spent a lot of meaningful time with the parents of STA students, learning about their viewpoints as well as the history and culture of Italy. 

     This past summer, she embarked on the STA trip to Greece and Turkey. The tour included visits to Athens, Delphi, the Greek islands of Mykonos, Patmos, Rhodes, Crete and Santorini, Kusadasi and Istanbul. With 39 students, and time spent on a cruise ship, she found that there were many opportunities to connect with others. In regards to visiting mosques in Turkey and having the opportunity to immerse herself in the culture, May-Washington felt that she could live out the mission of STA outside of connections with students. 

     “Our mission is ‘To love the dear neighbor without distinction,’ and what better way to love the dear neighbor than to go to other sites of diverse neighbors? And so we can do that locally, but how amazing is it that we can do that internationally.” May-Washington said.

     Additionally, May-Washington has utilized the time on the alumnae trips to New York City, Los Angeles and Paris to reconnect with the past graduating classes and get them re-involved with the STA community. An example of this was the proposal of the Paris trip that May-Washington has attended twice, one this past August and the August of 2022 

     “The reason this trip [to France] started was because of alumna Rozanne Stringer, who I believe is class of 1971,” May-Washington said. “She was on the quad attending the homecoming alumnae reunion and she came up with the bright idea of taking some of her STA sisters to travel, because that is the work that she did…she was a former Rick Steves tour guide, and she wanted to show some of her alumnae sisters what kind of work that she does. She talked to our alumnae director Paula Holmquist, and then they came to my office, and I was like ‘great idea!’”  

     Incorporating the ideas of past STA students has strengthened the school community and has encouraged participation among previous graduating classes; May-Washington noted that STA has one of the highest return rates of alumnae compared to other high schools in the Kansas City area. 

     “We want people to know that sisterhood isn’t just when you are a student at STA, we want them to know that it’s forever.” May-Washington said. “And I think that it’s important that those who have graduated know that I and we still care about them, and that they are needed.” 

     Through all of her travels, May-Washington has learned some important lessons revolving around the acceptance of other cultures and traditions, as well as the sustaining of relationships with people. She has found that spending meaningful time with people in the context of a relaxing vacation opens up deeper connections through conversation, and she finds that that is the most important part of a trip for her. 

“It’s hard for me to pick which trip was my favorite, because they were all amazing,” May-Washington said. “Every single trip I felt as if I have gotten closer to the community, either alums of STA, students, or parents, so it really has helped me to enhance my relationship with everyone at STA.”

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Sarah Schwaller
Sarah Schwaller, Opinion Editor
Hello, readers! I am Sarah Schwaller, and I am a senior. This is my second year on the Dart staff, and I could not be more excited! I am on staff as an opinion editor, and I hope to grow in both my writing and editing, as well as my photography skills. In my free time, I play soccer with both Kansas City Athletics and STA, and I participate in musical endeavors with Stage Right Performing Arts.  You will also find me hanging out with my friends and family regularly! I love traveling, and one of my goals is to visit all 50 states and all the continents in the world. Traveling sparked my interest in photography and writing because the world is constantly changing and full of interesting things. I hope you enjoy reading!

Comments (0)

Please review the Dart's editorial policy before commenting. Please use your first and last name; anonymous comments will not be published.
All DartNewsOnline Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *