Kelsey Richardson ’11

Kelsey with her students.
Kelsey with her students.

Major: History and Political Science (concentration in political science and a minor in peace and justice studies)
Work Crew: Electricity Crew and Forestry Crew
Service: Room at the Inn + Animal Shelters
Current Job: Upper School Director: Pioneers Baccalaureate School

“If I had gone to a conventional school, I would not have thrived in an unconventional environment.”
-Kelsey Richardson ‘11

After spending some time in AmeriCorps, Kelsey came to Warren Wilson to pursue a degree in History and Political Science with a minor in Peace and Justice Studies. She says her teachers here helped shape who she is today by letting her spread her wings and ask questions. She notes her thesis advisor, Melissa Blair, in particular as a great role model who exemplified a strong woman in a man’s world. Furthermore, she says that her Warren Wilson education taught her, “That every experience is a learning experience. Whether you’re walking down the street or in the woods, you can learn something from everything and the most interesting people you’ll ever meet usually view the world that way.”

After graduating, Kelsey knew she wanted to work internationally and applied to work for Pioneers Baccalaureate School in Nablus, Palestine. Despite having no intentions for that destination while still in school, she had taken a class entitled The Palestinian Question at Warren Wilson. Although she was shocked to find such strong and opposing opinions regarding the subject, she says that the class help prepare her for the world she was stepping into.

Shortly after arriving in Nablus, Kelsey picked up a lot of responsibility in a short period of time and credits her Triad experience for her ability to work well amongst high demands. She is currently the Upper School Direct of the Pioneers Baccalaureate School which houses 7th to 10th grade. She helps students prepare for the SATs, college registration and setting up their college profiles. She is also in charge of coordinating extracurricular actives and community service projects. Pulling from her time at Warren Wilson she aims to combine her students’ school work with service in the hopes of teaching them patience, ingenuity and the understanding that any failure is just another opportunity.