GREENWICH, CT, October 24, 2017—
Sacred Heart Greenwich has appointed Jennifer Phelan Bensen as the next head of its Upper School beginning on July 1, 2018 for the start of the next school year.
Ms. Bensen will succeed Jayne Collins, who has led the Upper School for the past 18 years, a period of tremendous growth and expansion in enrolment, curriculum and facilities at the all girls’ Catholic, independent day school. Founded in 1848, Sacred Heart is located at 1177 King Street, Greenwich. It has a cued early childhood education program and is all-girls from kindergarten through twelfth grade. Mrs. Collins will remain at Sacred Heart where she will serve as the dean of faculty and curriculum in the Upper School.
Ms. Bensen has been an experienced educator for 32 years and a highly effective communicator whose strength lies in building relationships with colleagues, as well as students and their families. She started at Sacred Heart in the fall of 1995 as the director of physical education and athletic programs, a position that spanned the Lower, Middle and Upper Schools. Ms. Bensen graduated from Gettysburg College with a bachelor of arts degree and received her master’s in education from the University of New England. She has one daughter, Tory, a graduate of the Class of 2010.
At Sacred Heart, Ms. Bensen has served in many roles, including teacher, coach, advisor, academic dean, dean of students for both the Upper and Middle Schools, and coordinator of the international exchange program. Most recently, she has fulfilled the roles of director of the Summer Enrichment Program and co-chair of the Formation to Mission Committee in addition to serving as Upper School academic dean and exchange program coordinator.
“Whether motivating Upper School students on the playing field as a coach, mediating parent-teacher conferences, or leading our exceptional academic program, Jenn always promotes inclusivity, honesty and understanding,” said Pamela Juan Hayes ’64, head of school. “As an independent school educator, she believes in the holistic development of each student and challenges them to be engaged citizens, articulate critical thinkers, and compassionate community members.”
“Her fellow faculty and staff members deeply respect her collaborative approach and her dedication to living out the Goals and Criteria of a Sacred Heart education,” Mrs. Hayes said.
Ms. Bensen said she is looking forward to taking on the responsibilities of her new position next year. “Sacred Heart Greenwich provides an empowering learning environment for young women with many opportunities for leadership development which provides an outstanding foundation for success in college and in life,” said Ms. Bensen. “As a school leader, I hope to encourage, support and inspire our young women to become intelligent, confident and compassionate leaders who will to use their knowledge and insights to change the world.”