A New Direction For Jane
Jane Murray, currently Dean of Students, Year 11 will step into a new role at the College in 2023 as Director of Boarding. We asked Jane about her new position.
What are you looking forward to most about your new role as Director of Boarding?
I’m really looking forward to meeting the families and getting to know their daughters.
What are you hoping to achieve in your new role?
The simple, most important thing is a happy home away from home, full of laughter and kindness, where the boarders can enjoy the value of community and grow into the young women they strive to become.
Why did you decide to apply for this position, moving from your role as Dean of Students to Director of Boarding?
I owe a great deal of gratitude to the opportunities afforded to me when I went to boarding school myself. I have loved my role as Dean of Students and have really enjoyed working closely with this year group. When the position of Director of Boarding came up, I felt compelled to give back to the boarding community – specifically at Santa Maria. I want to serve the College for many years to come.
Tell us a little about your background
I sometimes think the best way to know a boarder is to be a boarder! I grew up in regional South Australia, Mount Gambier, and I went to boarding school in Adelaide. I am still in contact with my boarding sisters now. Boarding for me was a place of opportunity; working with inspired teachers, studying with dedicated students, hanging out with a house full of boarding sisters and having responsibility for myself. I learned so many life skills.
What experience do you bring to the role?
Knowledge and understanding can come from study, but the experience is something we learn by doing. I hold a Master of Business Administration, a Bachelor of Arts and a Diploma in Secondary Education and Teaching, and I have taught for over 20 years in girls’ education. After four years in leadership at Santa Maria, I feel I know enough about the culture and our community to represent the boarders every day.
How will your experience benefit you in your new position?
I am also a passionate teacher, and I know the academic challenges different year groups face on their learning journey, so I feel I can continue to support our boarders with this. Our boarders come from many places, arriving with a wide range of academic experience, but one of the first things they are challenged to do is fit in with the schooling system and find their place. At a visceral level, I know what that feels like, but also, I know we do an excellent job of supporting our boarders in this transition, and I am equipped to continue this good work.
As a Dean of Year, I have focused my professional work on pastoral care. I believe all students learn well when they live well, and I will continue to use this focus on wellbeing and the practice of positive psychology in boarding.
Do you have a message for our boarding community for 2023?
Boarders are at the heart of Santa Maria College. I am honoured to be joining the Boarding community and looking forward to meeting you all soon.