Photos taken by Rectory student Julia Z.
“Take a deep breath.” The calming tone of Ms. Maley’s voice may be heard in her small, but cozy office on the second floor hallway of the Academic Building. This is the office that students often like to swing by and be greeted by the welcoming face inside. Ms. Maley is Rectory’s new school counselor as of the 20-21 school year, as well as a dorm parent in Memorial and a coach for the swim team.
As the oldest of three sisters growing up in Port Washington on Long Island, NY, Ms. Sarah Maley had the unique experience of taking care of the younger ones. Even as a child, Ms. Maley listened to problems and tried to help. As a high school student, she was grateful for the help she received from her school counselor. In fact, they established a warm relationship that continues even today. Ms. Maley credits that relationship with her decision to become a counselor herself.
After graduating from Providence College, Ms. Maley worked as a counselor at Snowden High School in Boston. She decided to become a middle school counselor because she found that this age group is more readily eager to share their concerns, whereas she found herself having “to chase down” students in high school. Loving the winters in the northeast, Ms. Maley researched boarding schools with specialized learning programs. Fortunately, Rectory’s IIP program stood out. Ms. Maley applied for and accepted the job at Rectory during COVID-19 restrictions, but was lucky enough to see the campus for the first time through a facetime tour guided by Mr. Bendall. The wide fields, the pavilion, and the trails appealed to her, and now the Rectory campus has become home to both Ms. Maley and her new dog, Sofie. In fact, Sofie already agrees with the other faculty dogs that Rectory is the best playground she’s ever seen!
Although it is hard to imagine, this is Ms. Maley’s first time in a boarding school. She already loves that she can meet so many new people at work. According to Ms. Maley, the girls in Memorial dorm keep her young, and there is always something new being introduced to her. Although she is disappointed that swimming had to be cancelled this winter because that would have been a path for her to meet more new people, she is finding other ways to connect with the kind and warm community at Rectory. During one of her introductory meetings, she was amazed to discover that Rectory’s Director of Related Arts, Mrs. Bessette, grew up in the same town as Ms. Maley. Even more surprising is that Mrs. Bessette grew up in the same house as Ms. Maley’s best friend!!! (Now that is quite a coincidence!)
Outside of school, Ms. Maley enjoys watching football, especially the Buffalo Bills, although she says that she didn’t quite understand the game until she was a teenager. She loved the vibe of going to football games with her family. Her father’s side of the family, about sixty people, would come together each year for a game and almost fill an entire section of the stadium. Despite her puzzlement over the rules of the game, Ms. Maley has always enjoyed the chicken wings at football games.
Take a deep breath. Listen to some nice music or “doodle awhile.” Regain a healthy mindset and then refocus. In this challenging winter, reach out to Ms. Maley. She is here to brighten our days, and we are so happy to have her with us at Rectory. Welcome, Ms. Maley!