The Albert Lepage Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
At Hebron Academy, we have always believed that the ideal learning community is one in which diverse voices are represented, valued, and nurtured.
Today more than ever, we embrace the globally connected nature of our world and all of the exciting opportunities it brings. We are therefore very proud of our welcoming multicultural community, in which curious students from all around the world come together to learn the cross-cultural skills that they will need to achieve ethical, sustainable, and successful lives.
These skills are actively taught in our classrooms, through our extracurricular offerings, and during community-wide events and celebrations. By learning these skills and expanding their cultural horizons, Lumberjacks are prepared to be the next generation of leaders who will creatively and empathetically work towards a more just and compassionate world.
Over the years, Albert Lepage ‘65 has given back to Hebron Academy in many ways, as a trustee and as a philanthropist. According to Lepage, he attributes the teachers and fellow students he met here with making him a better person.
His generous gift of $5 million to create the Albert Lepage ‘65 Center for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is rooted in his days attending Hebron in the 1960s, where he also found acceptance.
The Albert Lepage Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Hebron Academy was established to develop the values of global cultural awareness among trustees, faculty, staff, students and parents, enabling all associated with Hebron Academy to become leaders for equity and social justice.
“I always have believed that a lot of my positive life experience started here at Hebron, when I met people from all over the country and the world, representing different ethnicities and backgrounds,” says Lepage. “I came from a small town in Maine, where being of French-Canadian-American ancestry was difficult. Although we were a majority, we were treated like a minority. So, after coming to Hebron, I soon realized that exposure to diversity was contributing to my becoming a better person.”
One member of the Advisory Council is Samuel Stafford ’68, a judicial member of the 8th Circuit Court. When Stafford arrived on the Hebron campus in 1964, he was the only person of color in the student population. Raised in Gainesville, Florida during the height of segregation, he recalls the many levels of change he faced at once. “Everything was unfamiliar. People with far different backgrounds, new ways of learning, and, especially after Halloween, the kind of cold weather I’d never experienced,” he says. But one thing that made the transition easier was the kindness of his teachers and class- mates, including a certain fellow student.
“I remember Albert Lepage clearly,” says Stafford. “He was kind, he was outgoing. Even as a young man, I recognized that his heart was in the right place. It’s a big reason I was excited and honored to join the initiative he introduced to Hebron.”
“It’s very exciting that we did this all ourselves,” he says. “We didn’t hire any consultants. We simply rolled up our sleeves and got it done. We established metrics for success and we are moving forward. The goal
is that when every student leaves Hebron, they will have a broader, more global social
perspective that will benefit them, their community and, ultimately, the world.”
The Center for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Hebron Academy was established to develop the values of global cultural awareness among trustees, faculty, staff, students and parents, enabling all associated with Hebron Academy to become leaders for equity and social justice.
- Develop a comprehensive approach to Hebron Academy’s curriculum and student experience to embody values of global cultural awareness.
- Recruit, attract, develop and train a faculty and staff which is more representative of our diverse and inclusive society and its underrepresented members.
- Ensure students’ understanding and appreciation of global issues, cultures, and perspectives through curricular initiatives and Academy activities.
- Achieve and sustain a diverse, equitable and inclusive student population representative of global cultures and perspective.