Total Focus Podcast E15 With Hillary May

Guest of the week

Hillary May

Miss Delaware 2019

Hillary is a 23 year old PhD student at the University of Delaware studying Education and Learning Sciences. Her research is currently focusing on how young children learn through play. She is also working on validating a digital language screener for two year olds her lab recently developed. Hillary originally got her Bachelor's degree in Psychology with minors in Philosophy, Chemistry, and Neuroscience from Butler University. Her ideal job is to be part of the development department of a network like PBS helpingto create new educational programming for children ages 3-5.

Having battled depression herself, in addition to having been personally impacted by a suicide loss, Hillary's social impact initiative revolves around creating open and honest conversation about mental health. In doing this, she volunteers with the Delaware chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention as a volunteer and trained "Talk Saves Lives" presenter. She thinks it's so important though, to also remember those individuals who remain after a suicide loss. AFSP has a number of resources for surviving friends and family members, but Hillary wanted to be more involved than that. Hillary also volunteers for Supporting KIDDS, the only grief center for children in the entire state of Delaware. With KIDDS, Hillary facilitates the Healing Pathways group therapy series for children ages 5-16 who have lost a parent or sibling. As a facilitator though, Hillary most enjoys working with the parents. She loves being able to provide parents with the skills she has learned to help them better understand and respond to their children's behaviors at home.

While Hillary danced from age 3-18, she has been singing non-stop since birth. For Miss Delaware she performed I Could Have Danced All Night from My Fair Lady. Singing has always been Hillary's true talent and has opened many doors for her. In high school she was part of an all women's ensemble which consisted of 6 members. Angelus (the group) was dedicated to performing both sacred and secular music, polyphony, medieval chant, and pieces from the American sacred harp tradition. This professional group, which Hillarywas a part of from ages 15-18 travelled the United States performing concert tours. Hillary also performed in the New York premier of the song cycle Calling All Dawns, and was hand-picked by the composer to be a soloist in the Lincoln Center production at just 15 years old. She was invited to return to New York to sing in the subsequent song cycle The Drop that Contained the Sea in Carnegie Hall, but decided to accept an offer to dance in the 87th Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade instead.

This is what I have, so let me know if you want anything different! Feel free to edit it to what you need as well!

Host of the show

Paul A. Belletiere, ACC


Sponsor of the week

Mid Atlantic Video & Photography Production