Meet Dr. Meg
There’s a reason parents and kids feel gratitude and relief when Dr. Meg Murray, educational psychologist and owner of Be Alright Tutoring, steps into their lives.
- Is it her background in education, which includes a doctorate in educational psychology earned from the University of Connecticut?
- Is it her athletic career, which includes playing for the UConn Huskies™ in the mid-1980s under famed Coach Geno Auriemma?
- Or, is it her life after college, which includes acting as a sports psychologist for the elite athletes of NASCAR™, the NFL™, and Wimbledon champ Mary Pierce?
- Is it her experience working with special needs children and families?
- The time she spent as an advisor for athletes and other students at the University of Texas and Texas State University?
- Maybe it’s her prestigious work as the education lead helping carve out a new path for learning with the acclaimed project like the $350-million Las Vegas project 9thBridgeSchool.
While Dr. Meg’s resume is impressive, the time she invested in her own children and the foster children under her care for 18 years is likely what speaks to families the loudest.
It’s this experience that gave Murray a deep and personal understanding of the power behind a strong, encouraging, outside voice when it comes to supporting families living through our challenging world.
“I don’t know how to define what we do,” said Dr. Murray. “We offer something beyond tutoring. We are an additional resource for families living in a crazy world.”
While Murray has an extensive background in education, especially with children living with learning disabilities, her ability to offer something more than reading, writing and arithmetic show in glowing testimonials from Be Alright’s client family.
“We are a family resource offering traditional academic lessons, educational support, individual coaching, and child advocacy with specialized experience in special needs, traditional schooling, alternative schooling and mainstream school administration. It’s a mouthful,” Murray adds with a grin.
Athlete and coach: Setting goals
Murray is quiet about being a shooting guard for the esteemed University of Connecticut’s Huskies Women’s Basketball Team under Coach Geno Auriemma. Being an athlete influences Murray deeply with her work with students as she helps kids develop goals and the structure to achieve them.
“I draw upon those skills from being athlete even today,” she said. “Playing for UConn was a goal of mine and, in order to achieve it, I had to do the right things,” Murray continued. “It’s about making the right choices as you travel down your path.”
Murray continues to help students learn how to make those right choices leading to goal achievement. She recently helped a high school wrestler achieve his goal of wrestling for Northwestern University with SAT and ACT prep.
“I played with Coach Auriemma,” said Murray. “His first year was my second year,” she continued. “Today, the Huskies are the best in the world, but he took over our team when we were the bottom of the bottom,” she adds with a smile.
A lifelong athlete, Murray continues to train early each morning. “I’m really committed to my health and wellness, but my physical well-
being is the source of my energy and grounding,” said Murray. “If I take care of myself, then I’m able to take care of others throughout the course of the day,” she added.
After earning her undergraduate degree at UConn, Murray worked on her UConn doctorate by teaming with the NCAA, studying student-athletes, and their needs at the collegiate level.
The path to Be Alright
“Before I started Be Alright, I was hired Zappos’ CEO Tony Hsieh as an education lead bringing a revitalized concept of education to downtown Las Vegas,” explained Murray. “All these innovators were brought in from around the world, and we designed a school called the 9th Bridge School.”
When Murray realized Be Alright Tutoring had a lot of potential for helping families and students, both mainstream and special needs, she shifted gears to business owner. The popularity of her services required additional staff within two years of the company’s start up.
“I decided to bring in some folks, and it was a hard decision for me,” she explained. “I knew I needed to find educators I could train or moms around the country with steady experience educating their own kids with disabilities like ADHD, ADD, Dyslexia, Autism or the like.”
Murray took her time to create the right team for Be Alright. “You can’t really find this combination of talent we have here at Be Alright,” she continued. “We have experienced educators and moms who understand how to motivate the most difficult-to-motivate children,” she added.
While the company name uses the word “tutoring,” Murray knows her staff offers something beyond traditional tutoring. “We advertise in the tutoring space, but I don’t really consider us tutors,” she said. “I use the word specialist and coach, but even those words don’t capture what we do,” she added. “We are a family resource offering traditional academic lessons, educational support, individual coaching, and child advocacy with specialized experience in special needs, traditional schooling, alternative schooling, and mainstream school administration. It’s a mouthful,” Murray adds with a grin.
Building confidence in an insecure world
“I’ve learned, from working with my own kids and working with students, how most kids operate in one of two states, either a survival state or a more natural, relaxed state,” explained Murray. “Our goal as educators at Be Alright is to reach kids in this relaxed state, so they can absorb and think about what they’re learning,” she added.
Murray sees a lot of today’s parents overly focused on seeing their kids reach certain learning milestones, when, sometimes, the importance of building self-confidence, developing meaningful relationships with educators and a love of learning is overlooked.
“Engaging with our students is just as important, if not more, than looking over sight words or individual lessons,” said Murray. “We need children to feel safe and encouraged in school and in life,” she continued. “If we can help a child feel joyful about reading, writing, and other lessons, and, if they feel safe enough to ask when they don’t understand, we’ve given them tremendous skills for life.”
According to Murray, all educators, including tutors, are a part of each child’s lifeskills’ team, something desperately needed for today’s stressed out, over-worked families.
Phenom athletes and what they teach educators
“I collaborated with the NCAA™ for my Phd., exploring what student-athletes need at a collegiate level when it comes to advising,” explained Murray. “What needs are being ignored, maybe because we put them on a pedestal?” she continued. “We assume these kids are great, when oftentimes, on the inside, they are just like everybody else.”
After earning her doctorate, Murray traveled with the Women’s Tennis Association™, working with Mary Pierce as a sports psychologist during the time she competed at Wimbledon. She served as a private coach to Pierce when she won back-to-back Wimbledon. In a similar capacity, Murray worked with the NFL and NASCAR.
After her time working with elite athletes, Murray began building curriculums for schools around the country. This new way of looking at education led her to the creation of Be Alright Tutoring, where she saw an opportunity to use her career, Ph.D. and athleticism as a foundation for families requiring more support either with traditional after-school tutoring or more intense homeschool advocacy.
“We mentioned these survival space children go to when stressed,” said Murray. “I know from raising my own children with special needs about this while survival mode,” she continued. “Elite athletes kinda come up in that space too. They need help navigating comfort, love, and daily life.”
According to Murray, many child athletes have so much of their lives structured by coaches, they struggle when asked to manage their personal lives in adulthood. “Often, these exceptional athletes have support systems ensuring their homework gets done and goals are met,” she added. “Often, they don’t learn key life skills, and we act surprised when they fall apart.”
Murray said she’d seen many elite child athletes, often women, who step away from their sport to learn how to manage their own lives. Once grounded, these athletes come back more with more maturity and play better.
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Meg's Personal Journey
I know the struggle parents experience when their children are struggling academically. As a single mom, I raised two special needs kids. My kids needed tremendous academic support, but the support they needed I was not able to find.
As my son was entering third grade as a non-reader, I became desperate. No teacher up to this point in his schooling had been able to teach him to read. That realization changed the course of my life.
It was at this point I decided to leave my fulltime job and embark on a journey to learn how to teach my son to read. I trained and learned with some of the best academic minds in the country with the goal of giving my son the tools he needs to not only succeed in school, but life as well.
Within a week my son was able to phonetically lift words off a piece of paper and read. I knew I had changed the course of his life forever. Since that moment I have made it my mission to help as many children as I possibly can. I often tell the parents of my students there is something magical in the work I do!!
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