Miss Hall's School Names Dean of Equity and Inclusion

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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Miss Hall's School has hired Paula M. Lima Jones of Amherst, Mass., as the school's first dean of equity and inclusion.

In this new role, Lima Jones will provide direction and leadership for diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives at Miss Hall's, working closely with students and adults to facilitate a culture of inclusivity on and beyond the MHS campus. A member of the school's senior Leadership Team, Lima Jones will join the dean of academics and faculty and dean of students to launch new DEI programming and strengthen ongoing institutional efforts toward achieving the school's strategic goal of inclusive community.

"I am thrilled that Paula is bringing her experience, passion, compassion and vision to the Leadership Team and will help take our DEI efforts to the next level," said Miss Hall's Head of School Julia Heaton. "We have a responsibility to ensure Miss Hall's is inclusive for all students and adults, on all levels, from curriculum to policies to community programs. We have been actively engaged in developing cultural competency, deepening cross-cultural dialogue, and seeking to honor and celebrate our diverse community. These goals are important to me as head of school, and to the school's board of trustees, who committed earlier this year to create this leadership-level position. I am excited to partner with Paula in this crucial work."

"I am most looking forward to making connections with students, faculty, and staff and empowering them to continue with the strong DEI work they have been doing, and I want to champion that work with them," said Lima Jones. "The opportunity to be back in a residential campus setting, teaching young people and seeing their growth and development is exciting. I am also excited to impart tools and strategies and to have the opportunity to do DEI work, particularly at this time, when issues of DEI on the national and global stages are playing out in challenging ways. I see my role as helping Miss Hall's be true to its vision to make DEI a central component of the experience for students and adults."

As a member of the school's Leadership Team, Lima Jones will work closely with key administrators and others to shape schoolwide policies and practices, both in the classroom and in student life at MHS.

Lima Jones, a Massachusetts native who began July 22 at MHS, brings several years of experience in DEI efforts to Miss Hall's. From August 2006 to May 2014, she served as director of the Office of Diversity Initiatives at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pa., where she provided strategic leadership for the college’s diversity programming. In that role, Lima Jones collaborated to develop, facilitate and implement campus-wide initiatives to promote diversity and foster a more inclusive climate. She also participated in student advising and mentorship, campus climate assessment, and several college-wide committees and projects.

From July 2014 to July 2016, Lima Jones was Racial Justice Program manager at the YWCA Boston, where she led workshops and training and grew a signature dialogue facilitation program. Most recently, she served as a teacher's assistant at Spring Street Preschool in Amherst.

She holds an master's degree in community psychology and social vhange from Penn State Harrisburg and a bachelor's degree in psychology from Emory University.


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BHS Diabetes Education Program Launches Weight Loss & Lifestyle Change Program

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Health Systems Diabetes Education Program has implemented a Weight Loss and Lifestyle Change Program for those with Medicare, with new classes beginning in November, at multiple locations across the Berkshires.

The program is aimed at adults 18 and older who have a diagnosis of pre-diabetes by a blood test within the past year. To be eligible for this program, participants must have a need to lose weight, with a Body Mass Index of 25 or higher. The program involves 16 weekly classes over the first six-month period, and six monthly sessions over the remaining six months, for a year-long program. Participants must also be willing to log food that they eat and their activity minutes. This program is covered by Medicare.

To apply for the program, call 413-395-7942. A representative from the BHS Diabetes Education Program will take down information and complete the pre-diabetes risk assessment questions. A lifestyle coach will then contact eligible participants to discuss the program and confirm acceptance.


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