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NESA Fall Leadership Conference 2019

Teresa Arpin


Transformation Systems

TERESA ARPIN is the President of Transformation Systems, working with educational organizations both nationally and internationally since 1996. She specializes in leadership development, governance, strategic planning and organizational transformation.

Dr Arpin has worked with boards of trustees, schools and school districts large and small across the US and internationally, including China, Poland, France, Czech Republic, Malaysia, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Ethiopia, Russia, Japan, Singapore, Turkey, and the UAE.

She has collaborated with the NESA Board for many years in the evolution of a strategic planning approach that is now being modeled in several international schools and other regional associations.


Dr Arpin is the 2013 recipient of NESA’s Finis Engleman Award, the organization’s highest honor, recognizing “outstanding dedication and service to schools in the NESA region”. She is also certified by Newfield Network, an international program for the development of ontological coaches.

3-Hour Workshop

Our Nature of Being: Ontological distinctions that help us thrive in a complex and changing world

Connect & Engage

As human beings, we are “meaning makers.” This often occurs through habit and without conscious consideration—and can actually create obstacles to our success, happiness and even organizational effectiveness. Essentially, we inherit and construct mental models that may serve us well -- or may limit our possibilities…often without our realizing it! We will explore this phenomenon and the ways in which we can be active participants, moving habit and unconscious action to intention and conscious action.


Ontology is the study of being — including the way we make meaning. Meaning-making is in part "story-making." Language, mood, and our physical stance all influence our "story." This session will explore ontological distinctions and skills that allow you to be more aware of these influences and to be more consciously active in your own -- and your organization's -- "meaning-making." This becomes critically important because the mental models or stories that we hold as true work to either limit or expand our possibilities -- both as individuals and as organizations.

Reflect and Apply

You will become familiar with some of your default interpretations, and you will practice taking a more intentional approach. You will become more aware of the role your physical stance and language play in more intentional meaning-making. Follow up sessions will be available to extend practice and refine application, helping you to embody these practices. Over time, you can become more skilled at critically examining and determining the assumptions that inform both your personal and organizational mental models.

Target Audience:

All are welcome.

Continuum Levels:

1, 2, 3

Learn more about how NESA plans Professional Learning
NESA'S Learning Continuum:


Save paper and effort where possible!

For your convenience, and to support our efforts in being "green", all handouts/files posted here have been notated with an A, B, C or D indicating the following:

(A) hardcopies needed at workshop
(B) electronic version on laptop is sufficient (for viewing during the workshop)
(C) required reading PRIOR to the workshop
(D) file not needed for workshop itself, but simply material of additional interest/reference


Updates to handouts may be made until shortly before the start of the conference.