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Lauren Elizabeth Wilson

Hailing from Canada, the new Principal of Taylorís College is clearly enjoying life and work in Malaysia.

by / Published: 8 Oct 2013

Lauren Elizabeth Wilson

Who Are You?
Name:
Lauren Elizabeth Wilson
Nationality: Canadian
Occupation: Principal of Taylor’s College
Time in Malaysia: Eight months

Lauren on…

Her origins and career
I grew up in Winnipeg, Canada, attended university in Toronto and worked for 33 years as an educator (Secondary School Math and Computer Science teacher, Department Head, Assistant Principal, Curriculum Consultant and Principal) in the Upper Ottawa Valley, a rural area of Canada near the capital city, Ottawa.

I have been in Malaysia since early January 2013. I am the Principal of the Taylor’s College Sri Hartamas campus, a campus of 800 students and 100 staff members, where students can complete one of three different Pre-University certifications—Cambridge A-Levels, South Australian Matriculation, and International Baccalaureate. Taylor’s College also offers a Canadian diploma at their Subang Jaya campus and there are many Canadians working for Taylor’s as a result. A friend of mine came here one year before I did, to be the Principal of the Cambridge A-Levels programme at the Subang Jaya campus.

My challenge is the same as it always has been at home—finding a work-life balance! I guess it must be me …

I believe my biggest work achievement is modeling for students and teachers that a Principal can be a very active participant in and contributor to the life of a school community, not just a figurehead.

Malaysia in a nutshell
(To describe Malaysia in) one word is pretty tough—how about warm, diverse and delicious?

Running in the hot weather is challenging, driving in KL is scary and interesting because I am accustomed to driving on the right hand side of the road with the steering wheel on the left hand side of the car (and also accustomed to other cars signaling and motorcyclists sticking to their lane!), I love the monkeys and the hornbills. I discovered Mind Valley, one of the top ten workplaces in the world right here in KL. I have met some incredible, talented, driven young people who seem to really enjoy having an adult treat them as equals and participate fully in their lives. I love participating in student field trips and events—I attended a Leadership Camp at Dusun Eco Resort with an obstacle course and a zipline with 100 student leaders, visited the Kuala Gandah Elephant Conservation Centre with a Biology class, participated in a five-day service trip to Cambodia with the IB class, and I am the staff advisor for the Dance Club, the Running Club, and the Toastmasters Club.

Her personal interests
I really love Malaysian food, and the great variety of spices. I am hoping to learn to speak Bahasa but have not got much beyond buying a book! And I won the Female Open category of our 5th Annual Jog For Hope Charity Road Race last month for the 10K!

Another interesting thing I have done in my life, although it was on a year’s leave and not part of my professional activities, is to sail the South Pacific for eight months on a 42-foot sailboat with a friend who is sailing solo around the world (Cook Islands—Tonga—New Zealand—Fiji—Vanuata—New Caledonia). I did that in 2006-2007 and would love to find a connection in the Malaysian sailing community!
 

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