We are thrilled to announce that Alia Carponter-Walker will be Hewitt’s next director of equity and community life, effective July 1, 2023. After a highly competitive search process that concluded earlier this month with on-campus full day interviews, classroom visits, and a thorough review of feedback submitted by faculty, staff, families, and the Search Committee, we are delighted to have recruited to Hewitt a highly respected educator and gifted community builder in the field of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
As our search process progressed and we acquainted ourselves with Alia, we were impressed by her true dedication, infectious joy, and genuine desire to motivate the Hewitt community to become more deeply connected, inclusive, and equitable in service of our mission. In her many interactions with the Hewitt community, Alia demonstrated time and time again that her goals are to, in her own words, “create an educational environment where differences are celebrated – where student inclusion and representation are core values” and “foster a community that allows students to drive culture and write their own educational narrative: a space where all students know they belong.”
After meeting with the community and seeing examples of Hewitt’s mission and vision in action, Alia remarked, “I am thrilled to be joining Hewitt as the director of equity and community life and look forward to learning and growing alongside this thoughtful community of students, families, trustees, alumnae, faculty, and staff. I am excited to help further Hewitt’s mission by inspiring girls and young women to be proud of who they are and who they are becoming, to respect and celebrate others, and to lead by strong and positive example.”
Alia currently serves as middle school dean at Poly Prep Country Day School where she is part of the school’s inaugural Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB) team. A SEED Certified Educator, Alia is the fifth and sixth grade advisor to the students of color affinity space and most recently launched Poly Prep’s employee affinity spaces for all faculty and staff in lower, middle, and upper school.
Having previously taught in Madrid, Havana, Buenos Aires, and New York City, Alia served as director of curriculum and program development at Curious Jane, a Brooklyn-based girls’ empowerment organization focused on hands-on learning through science, engineering, and design.
Alia earned her master’s degree in school leadership and policy at the University of Pennsylvania, where her thesis, entitled “Finding Where I Belong: Dismantling ‘Brokenness’ of Black and Brown Students at Predominantly White Institutions,” examined the Black and Brown student experience at independent schools in New York City. An alumna of a New York City independent school, Alia earned her undergraduate degree from Skidmore College, where she double majored in international relations and dance with a minor in Spanish. Alia is classically trained in modern dance and is fluent in Spanish.
In the coming months, we look forward to working with Alia and our diversity, equity, and inclusion consultants Martha Haakmat and Jason Craige Harris to develop a transition plan in order to ensure the continuation of mission-aligned work with our community. We are extraordinarily grateful to the Search Committee members for the significant time, energy, and thought they devoted to this process, and to Sherry Coleman and Staci Williams Seeley at Storbeck Search for the work they and their colleagues did to recruit such a strong pool of highly qualified candidates. We also extend our thanks to the Hewitt community for their engagement throughout our search. Their insightful questions and feedback have demonstrated their investment in our School and its future.
Join us in congratulating and warmly welcoming Alia to Hewitt as our next director of equity and community life!