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The Whigham School Announces Hire of Chief Operations Officer

GREENVILLE, SC, February 16, 2024–The Whigham School, a 2 year, 6 continent, 50+ country, global residency program that equips graduate-level students to become global leaders, is proud to announce it has added Beth Crews to its Executive Leadership Team as Chief Operations Officer and Dean of Students. Crews is already fully engaged in her position at the school.


“Beth is the kind of dynamic leader The Whigham School needs to achieve its mission,” said Steve Whigham, President. “Already, she’s making the kind of impact that is accelerating the growth and strength of the school.”


Crews received her masters degree in Counselor Education/Student Affairs from Clemson University, and served as Director of Undergraduate Evening Studies at Furman University for eight years. “I’m excited about the opportunity to build a totally innovative graduate education program from the ground up, in a world that desperately needs global leaders to solve our global challenges,” said Crews. 


The Whigham School will place students on a university campus as large as the world itself. While abroad, these future world changers will learn to speak five new languages. They will also study world history, culture, politics, sociology, economics and comparative religions within the countries and cultures where these ideas germinated and events occurred. Central to their education, each student will master the role of becoming a global leader, a change agent for good, an applied ethicist, and a world-class critical thinker. Graduates from the two-year program will earn a regionally accredited Master of Arts in Global Leadership, through The Whigham School’s partnership with the University of the Virgin Islands. 


This year, The Whigham School will begin accepting students into its first cohort and will make an announcement of its program later this year.

The Whigham School Receives 501(c)(3) Tax Exempt Status From IRS

GREENVILLE, SC, March 29, 2023--The Internal Revenue Service of the United States of America has determined that the Whigham School, Inc (The Whigham School) is a public charity that is "exempt from federal income tax under Internal Revenue Code

(IRC) Section 501(c)(3)." Donors can now deduct contributions they make to The Whigham School under IRC Section 170. The Whigham School is also qualified to receive tax deductible bequests, devises, transfers or gifts under Section 2055, 2106, or 2522.

The Future Belongs to the Connector

Many of us are quietly struggling with the question, “What will it take to succeed in the future?”

In the increasingly competitive world we live in, that question is more relevant than it’s ever been. One thing we know about the future, it will be different. And it will be those among us who correctly identify, harness and direct differences that will become the leaders of tomorrow.

That’s all good and fine, but what do we do today to become the future leaders of tomorrow? As Steve Jobs once said, “Innovation is the only way to win.” Just look around you: your smartphone, your TV, your car, your kitchen appliances, your streaming services, your online shopping, your athletic jacket, and so many more are obvious case studies proving that innovation wins the day.

But, from whence doth innovation come? A bolt of lightning? Pixie dust? A little red pill?

Many of us operate under the misguided notion that innovation arises from genius. “It’s the genius, like Einstein, who has an innovative thought birthed from thin air,” we repeat to ourselves, when, in reality, innovation is far less dependent on genius than it is on an ordinary person connecting two things no one has ever connected before. And, through those new connections, an entrenched problem gets solved … a fresh, new benefit gets created.

So, from whence doth innovation come? Through connections.

As Steve Jobs further advised, “Innovation is usually the result of connections of past experiences. But if you have the same experiences as everyone else, you are unlikely to look in a different direction.”

If how we win in the future is by innovating, then innovation is key. And for us to innovate, we need to form new, fresh connections between ideas, actions, and attitudes that haven’t been connected before. And for us to find new points to connect, we need a fresh supply of unique experiences no-one else has had. And for us to have these experiences, we must go out in the world and begin creating them.

Do you want to become a future leader? Become a connector. Go and find connections through unorthodox, fresh experiences.

  • Steve Jobs connected dots when he remembered what he studied about movement in a modern dance class to create the fluid, mouse movements on the first Macintosh computer.

  • George de Mestral, a Swiss engineer, connected dots and dreamed up Velcro while hunting in the Jura mountains in Switzerland in the 1940s. Mr. de Mestral realized that the tiny hooks of the cockle-burs that stuck to his pants and in his dog's fur could be manufactured as a fastening system.

  • Albert Einstein connected dots to solve a perplexing physics problem by using the questions the Scottish philosopher David Hume posited in his book A Treatise on Human Nature nearly one hundred years earlier.

  • Joseph Woodland created the idea behind the modern-day bar code (UPC Code) by connecting dots from Morse code (which he had used as a Boy Scout) with the linear structure of movie sound systems of the 1920s.

  • Van Phillips designed the first running blade prosthetic, the “Flex-Foot”, in the 1970s. He was an amputee himself. Van Phillips connected dots by observing the powerful hind legs of animals like kangaroos and cheetahs as well as the mechanics of diving boards and pole vaulting. Until this point prosthetics had tried to mimic human bones. Phillips focused on mimicking ligaments and tendons. Since the 1970s running blades have developed significantly and are the preferred prosthetic for all serious para-athletes.

  • Virtually every innovation in medicine, education, science, engineering, the arts, cooking, and many other human endeavors are the result of an observant person connecting dots that no one else has connected before—thereby, creating the future we know today.

Become a connector.

That’s exactly what we’re doing at The Whigham School. We are creating connectors. We are putting college-age students in unique and varied experiences spanning six continents and over fifty countries. It is doubtless that each Whigham School student will become a connecteur extraordinaire. And the future will belong to them.

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