Meredith Poulten '73
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A fierce believer in the power of prevention, self-esteem, and resiliency, Meredith Poulten has led numerous programs on substance abuse, coping skills, suicide prevention, parenting, and other topics of interest to the community. She has developed a multitude of programs for Medway High School in Massachusetts including a peer counseling program, a teen diversity group, and a health advisory program. Over the years, Meredith has received several dedications and awards from the school district, colleagues, and students.
Meredith graduated from Hofstra University in 1973 with an undergraduate degree in psychology, and went on to earn a master’s degree in counseling psychology from Boston University. She began her career as a middle school guidance counselor and soon saw the need for more mental health services in the public schools. Meredith decided to continue her education, earning a social work license and completing more advanced clinical training in order to become an adjustment counselor.
In 1987 Meredith pursued a large grant from the U.S. Department of Education. Tirelessly petitioning the government for support to start a health education program, Meredith received the funding to establish a walk-in center at Medway High School in Massachusetts. The center is a counseling center located within the high school, which enables students to obtain much needed psychological services on site, in a timely manner, and with a familiar, trusted adult.
Meredith has given lectures to every section of the population, from young students to experienced colleagues. She believes strongly that an adolescent needs to see someone immediately when he or she has a perceived crisis, rather than waiting a week or more for an appointment with an outside therapist.
Outside the school, Meredith has been involved for more than 10 years in community organizations such as The Samaritans, The Consortium for the Primary Prevention of Substance Abuse, In the Best Interests of the Children, and an adolescent advisory board for a local women's health center.
Looking forward to retiring in June after 35 years in the public schools, Meredith is excited to enter a new phase of her career and her life. She enjoys spending time with her two daughters, watching proudly as both pursue careers in the field of education.