Natasha Scott '07
Executive Director, Dorson Community Foundation, podcast host
Education: University of Pennsylvania, communications and film studies; Teachers College, Columbia University, master’s degree in higher and post-secondary education
What I’m Doing Now: I’m the executive director of a community foundation my mother founded in 1992. She has her own business — a homecare agency — and most of the women who work for her are low-income immigrants, often single mothers, from the inner cities of Essex County. She wanted to help these women help their kids, so Dorson began as a passion project for her. I’ve been involved my whole life, both as a participant — I took Dorson’s SAT Prep course while I was at Kent Place — and by helping my mom. Having been so influenced by my upbringing, I’ve always worked in education. Helping out at Dorson was always something I’d do on the side. But a few years ago, while working at Columbia University as an assistant director of undergraduate career development, juggling both became too much. My heart was tugging me toward Dorson. I took a leap of faith and in 2019 became its first full-time executive director.
Outside of Dorson I have another job. I cohost a podcast, called “2 Black Girls, 1 Rose,” with a friend from KPS, Justine Kay ’08. It’s about the Bachelor and Bachelorette franchises and other reality TV shows. We deliver social commentary, provide recaps, and discuss race representation. My life now is very much running Dorson and also running this podcast business, which has grown tremendously. My time is split 50/50. I’m setting the vision and designing the programs at Dorson, but am less involved in the day-to-day program management.
How KPS Has Influenced Me: From a very young age I was introduced to the idea of educational disparity. At Dorson, I saw students from East Orange, Irvington, and Newark who looked like me but were going to very different schools. I was cognizant of the value of education and the privileged education I was able to get at Kent Place. I was that much more grateful for it. Having that insight propelled me onto this path. Getting a strong leadership foundation at KPS also empowered me. I’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit — the podcast is one of a few businesses I’ve started over the years — but having that confidence, knowing how to put my ideas out there and see them through, that definitely was ingrained in me and nurtured at KPS. I was given the space to be creative; I wasn’t put in a box.
Advice for My Kent Place Sisters: This year was a big reflection point for me. I’m building two businesses at the same time and I wasn’t really stopping to ask myself what I want. What life do I want to design? It’s important to build in time for reflection. KPS women are all leaders, super smart, and ambitious. We’re an impressive group of women. But I’ve learned it’s important to stop or pause to check in with yourself, make sure you're happy, make sure what you’re pursuing makes sense. That can be hard when you're so ambitious and striving for the next thing, but remember to consciously build in time to reflect.