Jamie Kim, cub writer
Graduation is nothing new. It happens every year, yet it still brings a frenzy of excitement and anxiousness. This year, with the other 3.3 million U.S. high school graduates, 429 Beverly seniors will flip their tassels from left to right and commence the next chapter of their lives.
For these last couple weeks of high school, the Class of 2015 will not only look forward to their future plans, but also reflect on their time at Beverly. Following in the footsteps of the Class of 2014, the majority of this year’s graduates will also be pursuing further education beyond high school. More than 95 percent of last year’s Beverly seniors directly went on to a higher education, as will 80 percent of the respondents from the Class of 2015. (Sixteen point eight percent of the class has not responded to the graduation survey.)
“I believe [the next stage of education] is a pivotal time for adolescents to grow to maturity and become worldly knowledgeable about higher education. College is an avenue that teaches far more than any class. As well, I’m so excited to be going to George Washington University next year!” senior Michelle Adams said.
Senior Aaron Boudaie, who will be a UCLA Bruin this fall, believes that Beverly has prepared him adequately for college.
“I learned a lot from my time at Beverly by making the most of Beverly’s resources. I took seven AP and seven honors courses, which took advantage of the fact that Beverly has a strong core curriculum that prepares students for college. I also involved myself in three clubs where I held leadership positions, played a sport and volunteered. Involving myself in Beverly both academically and in extracurricular activities [helped me grow] a lot as a person,” Boudaie said.
In the fall, senior Rachel Eshtiaghpour will be attending the University of Oregon in the scholars program. She was able to receive a $10,000 annual scholarship by utilizing the resources the Norman Nation offers its students.
“Beverly has provided all the tools, like the classes, a lot of personal time with teachers and a great library, that I needed to be successful. It’s just a matter of using these tools,” Eshtiaghpour said.
Teachers have also been fundamental steps in several seniors’ paths to matriculation and acceptance.
“All of my teachers were instrumental in my growth as a student. My history teachers, Mrs. Fine, Mr. Van Rossum, Ms. Frutschy and Mr. Moraica, had the largest influence on me, as history is my favorite subject. I hope to study political science and public policy in college before going to law school,” Boudaie said.
In addition to helping some students find their passions, some teachers have served as role models.
“Four years ago, I learned an important lesson. My freshman math teacher became my first mentor in high school and told me his secret to success was to ‘look at each day as a new opportunity to be your best. Set high goals, be honest, never say no and work with people who share your passion for doing their best.’ I’ve always remembered that advice and try to live by it every day. Beverly has encouraged me to remain self-motivated, determined and honest. I thrive in this environment, and that is what has led me to my success,” senior Douglas Wu, who will be going to Brown University, said.
According to Jack Stone, Harvard College Class of 2019, his teachers and mentors have collectively shaped who and affected where he is today.
“I can’t possibly answer the question, ‘Who or what has affected you the most and how?’ There are far too many people who have pushed me beyond where I was and toward where I needed to be,” Stone said.
Beverly has not only shaped the academic successes for some, but also has taught them skills they can use beyond their education.
“My experience in high school not only prepared me for college; it prepared me for life outside school. I gained skills that cannot be taught. Through interactions with fellow students, teachers, classmates and coaches, I have earned a ‘degree’ in people and social skills that I did not even sign up for,” Wu said.
As the graduation ceremony becomes imminent, some seniors have shared what they will miss the most upon leaving.
“I’ll definitely miss the people and the faces that I’ve seen around campus and Beverly Hills for the past 13 years,” Stone said.
Wu, concurring with Stone, has also said that the friendships that he formed will be the aspects of Beverly he will miss the most.
“Looking over the past four years, I can instantly know the one thing that I will always remember. My friends were the pillars of inspiration and support that helped me over the past four years. They were the classmates that kept me awake during lectures. They were the hands that pulled me up when I fell. They were the people who stood by my side when no one else would,” Wu said.
No matter where the Class of 2015 is headed, they will always have Beverly as a place to call home.