By Katie Dulaney

I participated in Springhouse’s [Sourced Design] Lab while working on my dissertation on education policy and it was incredibly valuable for me to ground my academic work in an emotionally and spiritually rich community. I was touched from the first moments of our initial Zoom meeting when Jenny played Kae Tempest’s song “People’s Faces.” I’m not from Floyd, and I’d heard of Springhouse through my academic work, but by the end of that song, I felt like I’d already fallen in love with a Zoom full of strangers. Jenny & H are so adept at utilizing Zoom, and the mixture of structure and flexibility they provided in our meetings enabled us to virtually foster community. 

The most impactful piece of the experience was having time to understand and reflect on the five vitality-centered principles – as an individual, in a pair, and collectively as a group. As I became familiar with these principles, I began to gradually embed them in my life and work. I considered how they did or didn’t show up in my relationships with friends and family. I even wound up integrating them into my dissertation framework, and they became a lens through which I viewed my study as a whole.

Participating in the Lab has been a pivotal experience for me, and the five vitality-centered principles will forevermore inform the way I think about my personal life and education policy.

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