SEGL in London Director Christian Starling
Editor's Note: Christian Starling is the incoming Director of SEGL in London. He began working at SEGL as a Teaching Fellow in 2011, and currently serves as Academic Dean and English Teacher.
Dear friends of SEGL:
I am thrilled to have the opportunity to lead our semester program in London. London is one of the best classrooms in the world.
I knew this in 2018, when during a historically hot summer in a sweaty common room—the UK doesn’t really do air conditioning—our students debated Brexit with a Member of the European Parliament.
I knew it in the summer of 2019 when I heard our students had seen an acclaimed Covent Garden production of Hamlet starring a transgender actress.
I knew it in summer 2020 when our students, sitting COVID-bound in living rooms from California to Hong Kong, taught each other about fine art while I trained a live camera on the pieces they were exploring at the National Gallery.
I knew it in summer 2022 when longtime SEGL guest speaker and MP Ben Lake walked our students right past the room in Parliament where former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was being interrogated by his party. (He resigned the next day.)
I knew it as I listened to insightful and brave conversations on race and belonging--informed by Britain's struggles in those same areas--every summer.
SEGL has been in London during a time of great change in the United Kingdom, providing our students with a front row seat to the action and the tools to help them make sense of, and then make change with, what they have learned.
I am excited to expand upon the work we have already done, and to provide even more students with opportunities to shape themselves into ethical leaders who create positive change in our world.
Director, SEGL in London