|Soren Gabrielsen, Class of 2003 |
Winner of Fulbright Award to Teach English and Jazz to High School Students in Berlin, Germany
Soren Gabrielsen, a member of Waldorf High School of Massachusetts Bay's graduating class of 2003 and graduate of Connecticut College (2007), has recently been selected to receive the prestigious Fulbright Teaching Fellowship. Soren, who pursued a double major in German and philosophy in college, will teach English in a German high school in Berlin, and he plans to start an extracurricular club for students to study American jazz and folk music. Established by the U.S. government after World War II, the Fulbright program provides for international exchanges with the aim of furthering intellectual and cultural relationships between the U.S. and other countries. Each year, approximately 1,150 students are awarded Fulbright grants. Fulbright fellows receive round-trip transportation to the host country, a living stipend, research allowances and medical insurance.
While a student at Waldorf High School, Soren studied German and spent a semester studying abroad at a German Waldorf high school as part of Waldorf's exchange program. "Living and studying in Germany, of course, really accelerated my learning of the language," he says. "The experience was so fantastic that I decided to major in German in college and do another year of study in Germany." Soren spent his junior year abroad at the University of Freiburg where he took a full slate of seminar classes designed for native German speakers, not the lecture classes the typical American students take. "I didn't realize until much later that my choice of classes was unusual and maybe not the smartest thing to do. The workload was huge," he says.
Soren credits one of his experiences at Waldorf High School with giving him the idea for his Fulbright proposal. "I had been playing violin and viola for several years in youth orchestras at a fairly high level, but I was getting burned out with all the practicing. Then Willie Sordullo, the jazz teacher, asked me to play viola with the jazz ensemble. Jazz and the challenge of improvisation turned everything around for me and re-energized my interest in music. I played jazz on my viola for hours. I was so excited because I had found the freedom to create my own music. That experience made me think that studying jazz and folk music would be an exciting way for German students to learn about American culture and study English. I will be designing a curriculum that will explore the music's history and development through listening to recordings, reading contemporaneous news articles, and watching live concert films and documentaries. I also hope to show how jazz and folk music have influenced other genres of music, art and literature," he says.
To Soren's former teachers at Waldorf High School, it's no surprise that this student of German and philosophy is going off to Berlin to teach jazz and folk music. One of the hallmarks of his high school years was his enthusiasm for the breadth of the Waldorf high school program. "What I appreciate most about my Waldorf education is that I never felt that I had to fit into someone else's mold or limit myself to one or two things," he says. "At Waldorf, I experienced an environment where I felt comfortable to develop many different interests, like sports, music, German, art, drama, as well as academics. I felt free to work hard and challenge myself to do well, not just in one area but in several."
As he looks forward to his Fulbright fellowship, which will start in September, Soren anticipates that it will help him figure out what his next steps are: "I'm considering graduate school and the possibility of teaching at the university level, or I might decide to go to law school. I know I'm going to learn a lot in Berlin. Not only am I going to learn more German, but I'm going to know a lot more about jazz and folk music by the end. I'm excited about all of it."
|Sara Churchill, Class of 2003 |
In May of 2007 Sara graduated magna cum laude from Rice University receiving a BA in psychology. After graduating from college, Sara worked in a neurosciece research lab at Baylor College of Medicine where she worked on projects concerning the neurological basis for a perceptual disorder called Synesthesia. In September of 2008, Sara entered medical school at the University of Texas, Houston.
Sara appreciates her time at Rice for more than just her experiences in the classroom. While there, she was co-president of Rice's Vegetarian Club, and she was elected academic coordinator for her residential college of approximately 200 students. She also helped run orientation activities for incoming freshman and continued to serve as academic advisor and mentor for younger students.
Having spent the last five years in Texas, Sara has come to feel very much at home. "During my time at Rice I found a world in Houston that was all mine, not my parents', not my grandparents', not my aunts'or uncles'. It feels powerful to have built a home for myself in a place where I knew nobody. When I bought my first pair of cowboy boots and hat for my first hunting trip in South Texas I felt like the biggest poser, but now my boots are worn in and I'm at home here."
When asked what she values about her Waldorf High School years, Sara answers, "At Waldorf, I was given a lot of independence to make decisions about my education. I think having that experience so early on made it easier to make big decisions about how I wanted to handle my future." When her four years of medical school come to an end, Sara will be in the position of having to make another decision. She says, "I'll have to choose a specialty, and I hope that when I get to that point I'll be able to choose wisely. For me that means figuring out how to be a doctor and also maintain some kind of balance between work and my personal life. As a doctor, I want to believe that I'm not just saving lives, I'm changing them, improving them. I don't think I would be able to do that very well if I weren't also working on finding out what makes my life worthwhile."
|Max Lewis, Class of 2003 |
Max took a semester off after graduating from Waldorf High School and then went to Emerson College in Boston, to pursue a major in marketing and advertising. A turning point came for him in an advanced psychology course which included the neurology of religious experiences. "This course reawakened in me a desire to study religion, so I took a class in Judaism taught by a former chaplain at Brandeis University. After that, I knew I wanted to change my major." Max ended up transferring to Brandeis where he is currently a senior. He is majoring in religious studies, a self-designed, interdisciplinary major that includes courses in religion, philosophy, and anthropology. His honors thesis will be a critique of religious faith as represented by the three major monotheistic religions. He expects to graduate in the spring.
In addition to his studies which he thoroughly enjoys, Max is devoted to making music. "I really have two sides, and I can’t say which matters more to me--my intellectual life or my music which is my creative outlet." Since the winter of 2002, Max has played with Mirza Ramic (Class of 2001), in their two-man band, Arms and Sleepers. "We work really well together," says Max. Their shows include video projections created by Dado Ramadani ('03). The band has developed quite a following. In addition to recent tours in the U.S., they have put on shows in England, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, France and Luxembourg. They will be going back to Europe during Max's winter break. They are currently recording a second album which they hope to bring out in the spring.
When asked about his time at Waldorf High School, Max says, "I thought the school community was the best thing—it was a comfortable group of students and teachers who were open to different viewpoints and that valued intellectual dignity. I also liked going to school with a number of international students whose perspectives opened up my mind and made me realize for the first time that the world is one community. This experience made me more eager to travel abroad." After noting that several of the class trips were especially memorable, Max singles out a main lesson: "I wrote an essay on death and the after-life for Ms. Delaney’s main lesson, ‘Ideas and Consciousness,’ which was probably my first step towards religious studies."
Max is currently the president of the Brandeis Humanists, a student organization whose mission is to raise consciousness about how people can live meaningful lives without religious beliefs. The group shows films, sponsors various speakers and organizes lively debates.
Next spring, Max will find himself at another turning point: what to do after graduation. "I expect that my choice will be between pursuing either a PhD in religious studies, or trying to make a career as a musician. I imagine the path I take will depend on what opportunities are available when I have to make my decision, but I'm certain I won’t stop studying or making music no matter what I end up doing."
|Dado Ramadani, Class of 2003 |
After graduating from Waldorf High School, Dado (formerly Damir) went to Massachusetts College of Art and majored in animation. He graduated in May of 2007 with a BFA in communication and design. He then worked a series of construction jobs and freelance animation projects for a year and a half before landing his "dream job" at Plymouth Rock Studios. Dado is a member of a team doing pre-visualization animation. "In addition to traditional storyboarding, studios are taking a film's storyline and animating it, adding some basic gestures, camera movements and music. This later helps the production crew know exactly what they need for each shot in regards to cameras, sets, lighting and actors, allowing the studio to save both time and money," says Dado. Plymouth Rock Studios has recently purchased land in Plymouth where it will build a film and television digital studio complex, slated to open in 2010.
In addition to his job at Plymouth Rock, Dado teaches a class in 3-D animation at Mt. Ida College in Newton. "I'm thrilled to be teaching at Mt. Ida. The classes are small and the students are great. They challenge me to bring my best to every class, and I also work individually with each of them. It's important to me that they succeed with their projects and accomplish their goals."
Before starting his new job, Dado did a lot of traveling which he enjoyed. He went to Portland, Oregon and Florida with his girlfriend, and he also toured in the U.S., Europe and England with the band, Arms and Sleepers, consisting of two friends and fellow Waldorf High School alums, Mirza Ramic ('01) and Max Lewis ('03). Dado created the live visuals for the band which were displayed during the band's performances.
Dado doesn't hesitate when asked what he appreciates about his Waldorf years, "For me, the number one thing was the community. I knew all fifty to sixty students in the school, and I knew that everything I did affected the entire community. From that, I learned that my closest friends are what matter most to me. One reason I loved Mass Art so much was that I made great friends there. A few of us have the dream to start our own animation company someday, focusing not only on commercial work to pay the bills, but also pursuing our own ideas and projects."
Getting organized for his recent move to an apartment in Plymouth, Dado found his old main lesson books and was a little surprised by what he discovered. "I read my journal for Mrs. Wells' main lesson on Transcendentalists and my main lesson book for Ms. Delaney's Ideas and Consciousness. I was astounded that I had written so clearly my own thoughts on those subjects at that age. I appreciate getting the chance to do that kind of work in high school; and certainly, Waldorf High School was the only place I could've done it."
|Katie Anderson, Class of 2003 |
A schedule of classes like dance composition, ballet, contact improvisation, a dance research seminar, voice lessons and ecology, evolution and genetics may appear strange to some people but it’s just life as usual for Katie Anderson who is pursuing a double major at Oberlin College in environmental studies and dance, with a concentration in somatics (the study of the connection between mind and body). Looking forward to graduating next December, Katie admits that she has to work to balance the intellectual and creative work she’s doing: "Last semester, I went overboard and took a full load of science courses. This semester I’m doing a lot more dancing, both technique and composition."
Katie entered Oberlin's freshman class in the fall following her graduation from Waldorf High School. She initially had visual arts, women’s studies and environmental studies in mind (Katie won a Boston Globe Gold Key award her senior year for a charcoal drawing), and then took a dance class that first semester, which proved to be a turning point for her.
Katie spent a semester of her junior year in southern India, studying sustainability in Auroville, an international green community. When she went back to Oberlin, she realized that she needed direction. "I felt that I didn’t know what I was doing at Oberlin anymore so I went home to think about it." Supporting herself by providing childcare to families with young children, she took dance technique classes, worked on organic farms, and trained to become a certified yoga teacher. “When I went back to college this past fall, I did it because I wanted to, not because it’s what everyone does after high school. As a result I have had a totally different experience.”
"I'm happy right now--I'm learning how to express ideas and values through dance, and I feel that I have pretty much aligned my lifestyle with my values. If I had to say what I'm proudest of, it would be that I've made some risky choices and followed my heart despite advice to play it safe. I know that's a classic line but I really feel that way."
Katie is on track to graduate from Oberlin in December 2009. "I can imagine a few different options regarding my interests in dance and environmental studies. If I decide to fully invest myself in creative work, then I can see myself getting involved in environmentally conscious/feminist art and dance. I may also decide that it's best to keep dance and activism separate in my life--for example, I could work for an environmental policy group and dance in some other context."
Katie entered the Class of 2003 as a tenth grader, having spent her freshman year at a high pressure, competitive high school. "Looking back, I especially value the freedom, flexibility and lack of stress that I found at Waldorf. There was an emphasis on self-awareness in many of the main lessons, in addition to academic depth and focus. We had time to ponder ourselves and to ponder life. I came out of the experience with a philosophical depth that I wasn’t aware of at the time."
|Kai Matson, Class of 2003 |
Kai Matson is a Waldorf "lifer"--from nursery school at Lexington Waldorf through graduation from Waldorf High School in 2003; and now, in 2008, she's back as Waldorf High School's new Spanish teacher.
Kai had her first Spanish class in first grade and being exposed at such a young age shaped her life in a profound way. "From early on it was a dream of mine to be able to speak Spanish," she says.
With the fundamentals of the language in place from her years at Waldorf, Kai went on to Ithaca College. While there she spent a semester abroad in Grenada, Spain. "I absolutely loved it, although it showed me how much I still had to learn of the language and the culture. I was shy at first, and it helped to be thrown into the experience, when I had no choice but to speak." After four months in Spain, Kai could speak Spanish but still did not consider herself fluent.
The breakthrough to true fluency came in her next adventure. "After graduation, I volunteered in a small community, Arutam, in the Amazon in Ecuador. I helped to build houses and trails, and did reforestation projects. I originally went for three months, but ended up staying for almost a year. I fell in love with the place--and my fiance."
In Arutam, Kai became a part of the community, and a bridge between the other volunteers and the local people. "I taught English to the children in the school, while helping other volunteers with their Spanish. The people in the community don't speak English, so I translated for them."
After a year in the Amazon, Kai learned of Waldorf High School's search for a Spanish teacher. "I thought, 'I would absolutely love to do that.'" She returned from Ecuador and found herself, suddenly, on the other side of the desk. "It takes a little getting used to," she says, "to be a teacher when I was so recently a student." Joining the faculty soon after graduation, however, has its benefits, she has found. "I still feel a strong connection to my high school experience, and can bring that into the way I teach. I understand where my students are, and plan my teaching to reflect that."
|Felipe Ortiz, Class of 2003 |
Currently a senior at Massachusetts College of Art, Felipe Ortiz will graduate in May, with a Bachelor of Fine Arts and a concentration in painting. "I appreciate being a student at Mass Art," says Felipe. "I’ve had great opportunities to learn from so many creative people. I’m now completely immersed in the process of making art."
Felipe came to Waldorf High School of Massachusetts Bay for his junior and senior years. A native of Colombia, he attended the Luis Horacio Gomez Waldorf School in Cali, Colombia, and then the Kimberton Waldorf School in Pennsylvania. After he graduated from Waldorf High School, he headed to Alfred University in New York to study ceramics for three semesters. Then he took some time off to work and put together a portfolio of drawings and paintings to apply for a transfer to Mass Art.
Felipe notes that his proudest accomplishment so far has been his artistic development. "I’ve learned how to be ambitious for myself as an artist," he says. "At the moment this is the only thing I want to do with my life, so I’d better make it good. I experience moments of satisfaction when I step back from my work, and I know it’s good. Those moments aren’t frequent, but they are the essence that keep me going."
Felipe is currently working with two classmates on an exhibition to be shown in early May at Mass Art. His work will also be exhibited at the 2009 Mass Art Annual Auction. Looking forward to his next steps after graduation, he says, "I'm collaborating with another artist on an interactive project called Caminos Migratorios, which will explore themes of migration, adaptation, intercultural and artistic exchange between South and North American cultures. The project also relates human migration patterns to those of migratory birds that travel from Massachusetts to Colombia. The project will manifest itself in the form of two public outdoor sculptures depicting seven endangered species of migratory birds, one of which would be placed in Massachusetts and the other in Valle del Cauca, Colombia."
About his high school years, Felipe says that he most appreciates how artistic work is valued and encouraged at Waldorf High School. "I went to school with many talented and creative classmates and fellow students. I keep up with some of them, and it’s always great to see what new stuff they’re doing."
|Colin White, Class of 2002 |
After graduating from Waldorf High School, Colin White took a year off to coach high school basketball. In the fall of 2003, he enrolled at Roger Williams University in Rhode Island where he decided to study engineering because of his interest in how things work. His chosen discipline is civil engineering and he expects to receive his Bachelor of Science degree this May. Throughout college, Colin has been a Resident Assistant in the student dormitories, worked as a stage crew member and been involved in intramural basketball. He began as a referee, and for the past three years, in addition to playing on a team, he has been the supervisor of the recreational intramural basketball department which has grown from about 15 to 30 teams. For several summers, Colin did maintenance and remodeling work on the Lexington Elementary Waldorf School, including designing and laying the brickwork around the 703 Mass. Ave. building, under the supervision of Building Manager, Paul Menz. Last summer, Colin interned at Capaccio Environmental Engineering Inc. in Marlborough, Massachusetts doing research and field work regarding client compliance with regulations.
Currently, Colin is studying for the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam and working on his senior project with a team of four other engineering majors. Funded by a federal grant received by Professor Leavitt of the Marine & Natural Science department at Roger Williams, Colin's group is responsible for evaluating and implementing an alternative energy source for the power to a FLUPSY (Floating Upweller System), which is essentially a dock modified for growing shellfish. With the current set-up, FLUPSY's must be in a marina so they can be hooked up to town power. Colin's team has determined that the current pump requires too much power to rely solely on wind or solar energy, and they have suggested improvements to the FLUPSY design so that a smaller pump that utilizes less power can be used. They have also researched how to add solar panels, as well as designing a battery bank and a back up system. Colin's team recently presented their design to the New England Association of Shell Fishermen in Providence, RI.
Upon graduating from Roger Williams in May, Colin's goal is to find a position as an Engineer In Training (EIT) in the civil field in the greater-Boston area. After four to five years of work, Colin will apply for his Professional Engineer (PE) License. (From The Comet, April 2008)
Update: Colin passed his Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam and is presently employed as a civil engineer at the firm of Greeman-Pedersen, Inc., Stoneham, MA.
|Elissa Huber Anderson, Class of 2002 |
After graduating from Waldorf High School, Elissa continued her education at Boston University and enrolled in a six year doctorate program in physical therapy. Reflecting on her decision to study physical therapy Elissa says, "As a kid I did a lot of competitive figure skating and faced a slew of injuries which required physical therapy. This got me interested in pursuing the sports aspect of physical therapy when I got to college." In addition to her course work, Elissa joined the BU figure skating team and even participated in synchronized figure skating for the first time. She also made the Dean's list and successfully completed her B.S. degree in health sciences from BU in May 2006.
After her first internship working with sports injuries in the outpatient orthopedic center at the Boston Medical Center, Elissa realized she wanted to switch her focus to work with patients suffering from neurological injuries. She has finished her coursework for BU's doctorate program and is now completing her final internship in the Traumatic Brain Injury unit at Braintree Rehab Hospital. She works forty hours a week and has a case load of three to six patients with traumatic brain injuries, such as car accident victims and older adults who have fallen and injured themselves. What's the most challenging part of working with the neurological population? "Right now I have two slow-to-recover patients who are literally unable to move most parts of their body and are unable to communicate verbally. Our role as the rehab therapy team is to find the patient's strongest motor skill and then create a communication tool such as blinking or finger taps to indicate yes or no," Elissa explains.
Upon completing this last internship in June, Elissa will receive her doctorate degree in physical therapy from Boston University. She plans to study for the boards over the summer in order to become a certified physical therapist, and she hopes to practice in a neurological rehab facility once she is certified. Elissa currently resides in Arlington, MA and in her spare time she enjoys running. In fact, she's training for her first half marathon, which she will run with her sister in Boston this spring. (From The Comet, March 2008)
|Carlos Coutin, Class of 2002 |
Carlos Coutin began his Waldorf education in his homeland, Cali, Colombia and joined the Class of 2002 in 10th grade. After graduating, Carlos went to Newbury College, where he received a distinguished scholarship and majored in International Business Management.
During college Carlos completed three internships, the last of which was for FXport Technology Inc. where he researched and developed market data and learned other valuable skills. In addition to his studies, Carlos played intramural soccer and served as president of the International Student Organization. Carlos was a member of the Honors program, made the Dean's list every year and received the International Student Leadership Award three years in a row.
In 2006 Carlos graduated Cum Laude from Newbury College with a B.S. in International Business Management, and he was hired by McLean Asset Management Corporation in the Washington D.C. area. While working full-time, Carlos completed the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) program at Boston University. He is currently preparing to take the CFP Board Exam, a ten-hour test, this summer. As an Advanced Planning Associate at McLean, Carlos provides solutions to his clients' varying financial concerns by using sophisticated financial models to assess risk, taxes and overall investment strategies. He plans to get his MBA in the future.
In his spare time, Carlos enjoys traveling and spending time with friends and family. He also loves bringing innovation into his life and the work place. At McLean he managed the entire process of creating a formal tele-work arrangement for employees, including obtaining a $35,000 grant from the state and evaluating and implementing technologies that were secure and effective. "Providing the tools for employees to work from home is great way for the company to go green and recognize that both work and family matter," Carlos stated. Thanks to his efforts, McLean employees are able to work from home, or abroad, and have more time for the things and people they love. (From The Comet, February 2008)
|Chris Scheirer, Class of 2002 |
Following his graduation from Waldorf, Christopher Scheirer packed his bags and headed to Chicago to attend Wheaton College, where he studied English Literature and Philosophy. In addition to his studies, Christopher began practicing at Chicago Kendo Dojo in the city. Kendo is a traditional type of Japanese fencing that combines the spiritual and martial philosophy of the samurai. As a member of Chicago Kendo, Christopher competed in tournaments in Detroit and the mid-west each year and also performed at events throughout the Chicago area, including a demo for the Osaka Garden Festival and an inner city children's group. In 2004, after two years of discipline and practice, he was awarded first degree of black belt in Kendo.
Christopher made the Dean's List at Wheaton and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature (with a minor in Philosophy) in December, 2006. After graduating, he stayed in the Chicago area to continue Kendo, as he was working on his second degree of black belt, which he successfully achieved in February of 2007. Generally, Christopher practices Kendo 1-2 times per week and works on engraining the various strikes and techniques into his muscle memory. "To achieve a new rank you are first judged by a panel on your sparring skills with a partner," Christopher explains. "If you pass that portion you move on to perform 'Kata' with a partner, which are the formalized movements of striking and parrying with wooden swords that truly compose the essence of the Kendo art," he continued.
Last summer Christopher moved to North Carolina with his family. He is applying to graduate school and recently finalized all his applications and portfolio. He wants to study Medieval literature, obtain a masters and PhD, and eventually teach at a college or university. Perhaps sparked by the introduction at Waldorf, Christopher's main interest is the Percival story within the Grail Cycle and how it is manifested in different traditions. He hopes to enroll in a graduate program this fall at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Duke, St. Louis University or Notre Dame. Currently he has been assisting with the editing of a biology textbook that his father is writing, and he participates in a Kendo club in the Raleigh-Durham area. (From The Comet, April 2008)
|Claire Nelson, Class of 2001 |
After high school, Claire Nelson went to Wellesley College where she majored in international relations with a concentration in environmental studies. During college Claire spent a month with the School for Field Studies in Queensland, Australia studying tropical reforestation and also lived in Belgium and Finland for a summer while she completed internships at the European Parliament and the Finnish Ministry of Education. In the spring of her junior year Claire studied at the University of Otago in the South Island of New Zealand, where she spent nearly every weekend hiking in the mountains. Before and after New Zealand, Claire also traveled to Australia, Kenya and Tanzania. Back at Wellesley for her senior year, Claire was on the executive board of the college's environmental group and was instrumental in setting up a college-wide Sustainability Advisory Committee. She wrote her honors thesis on community-based management and hunting methods of indigenous whaling and graduated with honors from Wellesley in 2005.
After finishing her bachelor's degree, Claire spent a month traveling in southwestern China, and in the fall of 2005 she began working as the Washington Coordinator for the Center on Ecotourism and Sustainable Development, a non- governmental organization (NGO) based in Washington D.C. In the spring Claire returned to New Zealand where she traveled extensively around both islands and worked on post-tsunami planning policies with the Environment Bay of Plenty, a regional environmental council in the North Island. She returned to Gloucester, MA for the summer to prepare for her next move – to China.
Upon arriving in China, Claire spent September traveling on the western-Chinese portion of the Silk Road. Currently she is living in Beijing and is studying Mandarin part time while working on water conservation and energy efficiency at the U.S.-based environmental NGO, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). She also works for the Quebec Labrador Foundation researching the activities of Chinese environmental NGOs. In her spare time Claire enjoys exploring the back streets of Beijing on her vintage bicycle, traveling around China and Asia, cooking, drinking Chinese tea, and outdoor activities, especially sailing and hiking. (From The Comet, December 2006)
|Anne Dudley-Marling, Class of 2001 |
Anne Dudley-Marling took a year off after graduating from Waldorf and worked as a waitress to earn money for college and also traveled throughout the United States and Europe with friends. In the fall of 2002 she began her higher education in the liberal arts program at Bishop's University in Quebec, Canada, where she also took a few courses in French. At Bishop's University Anne was in several stage productions, including the lead role in "Five," a play written by a Quebec playwright. Additionally, Anne was involved in Amnesty International, which she participated in as a student at Waldorf as well, and she also volunteered with the Big Sisters Program.
In the spring of 2004 Anne transferred to Boston College to study psychology and photography. She is currently on the Dean's List First Honors and just won the Who's Who in American Colleges and Universities award. At Boston College Anne has continued her work with Amnesty International and has also done fundraising for a medical clinic in Africa that helps women who have been victims of violence. For the past two and a half years she has also been working 30 hours per week as a research assistant on a longitudinal study by Harvard University and Boston College that investigates the lingual skills of preschoolers.
Anne takes and develops her own photographs and is currently working on her senior project where she is photographing urban architecture in cities such as Montreal, Boston and New York City. Her ceramics and artwork have also been displayed at the Art Festival at Boston College.
Anne will earn her bachelors degree in May 2007 from Boston College and she is currently in the process of applying to graduate school, where she hopes to study Communications and focus on graphics and photography beginning in the fall of 2008. Upon receiving her bachelor's degree this spring, Anne intends to take additional classes and secure a job in the communications field to build her experiences and course work prior to her graduate studies. (From The Comet, March 2007)
|Mirza Ramic, Class of 2001 |
After graduation from high school, Mirza attended Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine and studied political science. While at Bowdoin, Mirza played volleyball and studied abroad for a summer in Prague. He also started a band called The List Exists with Max Lewis, Class of 2003. They performed experimental dream-pop music in shows throughout the Northeast. Prior to finishing his bachelor's degree in Political Science in 2005, Mirza completed an honor's project in government, which was a thesis on nationalism in the former Yugoslavia. He received an Eastern European Studies Award for Academic Achievement.
After graduation from Bowdoin, Mirza and The List Exists headed out on a three week U.S. tour where they played over 20 shows. At the conclusion of this tour Mirza and Max Lewis left the band to start their two-piece indie / electronica band called Arms & Sleepers. After working a few odd jobs, Mirza got a job as a Business Operations Assistant at Green Fuel Technologies, a Cambridge-based, alternative fuel company. The company recycles carbon dioxide by feeding it to algae to make various biofuels such as ethanol and methane. Mirza has been working at Green Fuel Technologies for the past year and is responsible for human resources and corporate tasks, legal issues and general business operations. "I really enjoy my job and the company is growing quickly. Last year there were 25 people working here and now there are about 40," Mirza said.
In addition to his day job at Green Fuel, Mirza works some nights and weekends waiting tables at the Middle East Club. His band, Arms & Sleepers, has released a few CD's with a small label in New Jersey, and they are touring the United States and Europe to support record sales. In April Mirza spent three weeks touring with the band on a trip that took him as far as Texas; and in July and August he will do a five-week tour to the west coast and back, where they will play about 35 shows. A European tour is planned for January 2008. Another Waldorf alum, Damir Ramadani (Class of 2003), creates the live visuals for Arms & Sleepers and will be accompanying the band on tour. (From The Comet, June 2007)
|Michelle Coe, Class of 2001 |
Upon graduating from Waldorf, Michelle ("Micky") Coe went to George Washington University, where she received an honor's scholarship and studied art history. While a student in Washington D.C., Micky also participated in political activism and human rights marches and volunteered in the community. After two years she moved back to Boston and took night classes at Boston University while also working at the Museum of Science, which solidified her interest in going back to school full-time for museum studies. At the Museum of Science, Micky ran the Omni theater, planetarium, 3-D movies and worked on Exhibit Hope and with school groups.
In September 2005 Micky moved to San Diego, California and continued her education in art history and museum studies at the University of San Diego . She will earn a bachelor of arts degree in Art History with a minor in business and a certificate in museum studies administration in May 2007. This summer Micky will also receive her teaching certificate in California. In addition to her studies, Micky volunteers at a local Saint Vincent DePaul soup kitchen and she also has a part-time job. Micky has a passion for visiting the art museums and galleries in Tijuana. She has also traveled to Switzerland, Hawaii, Bahamas and England and eventually would like to see the whole world, or at least travel to every continent.
Upon finishing her degree this spring from the University of San Diego, Micky would like to move to northern California and work at an art gallery in a hands-on role where she is involved in shipping, receiving, storing and evaluating the gallery's art. Eventually she would like to work at The Met in New York City or teach art history at the university level. (From The Comet, February 2007)
|Melissa DeWitte, Class of 2000 |
Melissa’s first stop after graduation from Waldorf High School was Clark University in Worcester, MA. During the two years she was enrolled at Clark, Melissa worked as a research assistant in the Sociology Department and was also a librarian at the International Peace Studies Library. At Clark, Melissa was recognized for her strong academic achievements, winning various academic awards and scholarships in addition to being named to both Clark’s Deans List and the National Deans List, a list for only the top .5% of college students.
Wanting to reconnect with her British roots, Melissa transferred to the London School of Economics in 2002. At LSE, Melissa was a writer for the school newspaper, The Beaver, and was sponsored by British Petroleum to mentor young students in inner city schools. She graduated with a BSc in Sociology with honors in July 2004.
Continuing her passion for the media, Melissa completed an internship with BAFTA* award-winning documentary film maker, Roger Graef, where she worked on several films for the BBC, including the One World Documentary of 2005’s Malaria Mission for the BBC and PBS. Next up she signed on at another production company--making documentaries for the leading UK networks and working with UK celebrities, such as former Spice Girl Geri Haliwell, Rod Stewart and Sharon Osbourne.
After working in TV production for two years, Melissa moved on to a career in publishing. She recently began working at The Financial Times as a Sales Executive in the Arts and Leisure section, and in her spare time she is working on her first novel.
*British Academy of Film and Television Arts Awards are the UK equivalent of The Academy Awards. (From The Comet, March 2006)
|Laura Wells, Class of 2000 |
Choosing to go straight to college after graduation, Laura Wells attended Saint Joseph's College of Maine, where she was invited to join the Honor's Program and majored in Communications - Public Relations. She was very active in student life; joining the Cross Country team, starting an Italian Club, participating in Student Senate, singing in the choir and tutoring middle and high school students. Laura also worked in the admissions office at the college and served as a Resident Advisor. Even with all her extra-curricular activities, she excelled in all her courses, being inducted into the Delta Epsilon Sigma Honor Society and graduated as class valedictorian in May 2004.
Laura's education and experience prepared her for a diverse career path, which took her to LEWIS PR, a high-tech public relations firm. During an exciting 18 month period, she traveled extensively and gained invaluable public relations experience. Desiring a more rewarding career, Laura recently accepted a position as the Events and Public Relations Coordinator at Wide Horizons for Children, the largest adoption agency on the east coast. She is currently responsible for planning cultural events for adoptive families and handling press for the organization. (From The Comet, January 2006)
|Chris Bednar, Class of 2000 |
Upon graduating from Waldorf High School, Chris headed up to Manchester, NH to study English at Saint Anselm's College. Eager to broaden his experience and give back to the high school he helped to form just a few years prior, Chris returned to Waldorf High School during the 2004-2005 school year to complete his student teaching requirement. He taught the 11th grade Parzival main lesson block, 9th and 10th grade English track classes and assisted with the physical education program. Chris graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in English from Saint Anselm's in 2005.
Chris reflects, "It was my high school experience -- the rich curriculum and my teachers -- that gave me a true love for literature and the passion to share literature and English with others through teaching." Intent on continuing his own education further, Chris was accepted into an intensive, one-year graduate program at Boston University, where he is currently pursuing a Masters of Arts in Teaching English. As part of the program he is teaching 9th grade English at Revere High School.
Most recently, Chris was invited to present a paper on Samuel Johnson at The British Society for Eighteenth Century Studies' 34th Annual Conference, which took place in January 2006 at Oxford. Chris expects to complete his Masters degree in May 2006. (From The Comet, March 2006)