“In the Driver’s Seat”
Dr. Miller and her skilled team continue to provide support and guidance to Eagle Hill students.
Though working under the new title of Dean of Support Services, Dr. Rebecca Miller’s goal at Eagle Hill School is the same as it has been since she began in Hardwick in 2004—to connect.
“My job and the job of all of our support staff here at Eagle Hill boils down to connection…making that connection with students, so they are comfortable and confident in themselves and their educational experience,” said Miller.
That team under Miller consists of two speech-language pathologists and four independent counselors, creating a holistic approach that caters to each student’s needs. This approach differs from other schools, as these professionals work with the students themselves and their teachers, academic advisors, and coaches.
“Our services to students don’t happen in a vacuum. We are continually looking to work on social and emotional growth with each student for all contexts. This can’t occur only when a student is in one of our offices. It’s something that affects them when they are around campus, in the classroom, and with friends,” said Miller.
Examining the somewhat complex nature that support services represent for students can be best compared to first learning how to drive a car.
“We are the driving instructors for each student. We are there to provide guidance and support, there to tell them when to push forward, and there to put on the breaks sometimes. Ultimately, they are the ones getting to the destination, but we support them along the journey.”
By working with each student to learn to advocate for themselves, Miller and her staff provide resources that expand far beyond their time at Eagle Hill.
“We serve as liaisons to the outside world for our students. We can help them access accommodations and specific support services at the colleges they are looking to attend. Overall, we push our students to learn how to make decisions and to see the value in making decisions for themselves,” said Miller.
Dr. Miller’s role at Eagle Hill doesn’t end with counseling and support services for students. In addition to having a homeroom and coaching the varsity crew team in the fall, Miller also conducts neuropsychological testing and teaches courses within the Pragmatics Department.
“Eagle Hill is my home and has been a home for my family for some time. For every difficult conversation you have with a student, you’re equally amazed by the success and accomplishment they experience both at Eagle Hill and beyond. Being able to be a part of their success is a special thing.”