Dana Papadima

Educational Director
Board Member

I graduated from the Faculty of Letters at the University of Bucharest. During my four years of studies, I discovered my vocation and passions (linguistics, poetry, and stylistics of the Romanian language) and made lifelong friends. The atmosphere of cultural vibrancy and fullness of life greatly helped me in defining myself and my existence within a spectrum of values rooted in my family education. Goodness, Beauty, and Truth will guide me throughout my life, like entities inherited from ancient Greece, eternally valid for the Judeo-Christian civilization under which the modern civilizations have developed.

After graduation, I faced the cold reality of life under communism. With an astronomical graduation grade, I was “parachuted” into a Szekler village in the middle of Covasna County, where I was the only Romanian speaker. After three years of internship, I left Cernat village with more Romanian speakers than I had found, some successes in exams, and very fond memories.

On December 22, 1989, I found myself a teacher at a school in the Gara de Nord area, dealing with many social problems, poverty, and broken families. I apprenticed there for 5 years with determination, and I learned that teaching primary school is the most challenging specialization in a teacher’s career.

After 1990, I temporarily left education. Other professional opportunities arose, and I chose the field of linguistic research at the Linguistic Institute of the Romanian Academy. I worked as an assistant researcher in the field of Romanian grammar and, in parallel, as a guest lecturer at the Faculty of Letters at the University of Ploiești.

For two years, I was a scholarship holder of the Austrian state, with an unusual and generous research theme, „Primele abecedare și cărți de citire din Transilvania”/ “The First Primers and Reading Books in Transylvania.” During this time, I participated in national and international colloquiums and conferences and published specialized articles in collective volumes, especially on nationalist discourse and wooden language in the communist and post-communist regime.

In 1995, I became the Program Director at the renowned Humanitas publishing house. In two years, I managed to establish a department for textbooks and educational books, which, starting 2000, gained the status of an autonomous publishing house, Humanitas Educațional. In 10 years, Humanitas Educațional succeeded in publishing the most valuable school textbooks in the humanities field, leaving a mark on entire generations and contributing to a change in the mentality of students, teachers, and society. Humanitas Educațional became a respected and recognised brand.

In 2008, I started a creativity school for children within the prestigious Erudio institution. My school was called Recreatio, and I brought some of its spirit with me when I joined Avenor, which was then known as Little London. I served as an Educational Director, Romanian language teacher, department leader, and middle school coordinator simultaneously. I guided the first generation of middle school graduates when Avenor High School was still in the planning stage. In a collaborative effort, we developed a Romanian language and literature program tailored to our students studying within the British system, while also valuing their native language and cultural heritage.

I have grown (in years and experience) alongside Avenor College. I am a teacher, mentor, colleague, advisor, and I consider myself one of the voices of the School, part of it, and part of the innovative path it embarked on many years ago.