The person I am today was molded by the three (far too short) years at Beacon. I grew up a bit of an oddball- homeschooled throughout elementary, the onus was on me as a student to learn the various subjects, with only books to serve as a teacher. Stepping into Beacon for the first time knocked the wind out of me. Classes were a whirlwind of engagement, active back-and-forths between my classmates and my teachers. My ability to learn was amplified tenfold in that environment, catapulted forward in this educational flywheel. Our teachers were brilliant educators, supportive guides, and even good friends.
The career path I’ve since taken is incredibly inter- and transdisciplinary. I’m a scientist, an educator, an entrepreneur, and an explorer, all rolled up into one. Looking back, Beacon prepared me very well for this. Our subjects never stood in silos, and we were always taught to connect ideas and thoughts across disciplines. The ability to think critically and creatively was nurtured in this environment, as opposed to the rote memorization that was so prevalent elsewhere.
The Night of the Notables was a perfect example of the interdisciplinarity of the Beacon program. From conducting research on your subject and then translating that into a written spiel. Practicing speaking in public and all the theatrics involved, not to mention the handiwork that went into the construction of your booth- that one night was the culmination of hard work across many different disciplines, and one I will never forget.
Outside the classroom, the many friendships I’ve made in Beacon will last me a lifetime. It’s been fifteen years since my batch graduated and though many of us haven’t talked in nearly that long, we find it extremely easy to catch up with each other as if no time at all has passed. This might be the most defining indicator of Beacon’s success- that an eclectic and widely varied bunch of kids can remain thick as thieves decades later.