The very last year at BASIS Independent Brooklyn serves as a bridge from traditional classroom learning to apply knowledge in a real context. By this time, most students have their Advanced Placement (AP) courses and graduation requirements nearly completed. As such, this year is designed to act as a “capstone” to their whole educational experience through three elements: daily college counseling courses, college-level capstone, and post-AP courses. For most students, the year culminates in a Senior Project, a unique opportunity to independently pursue their own research interests. You can see Class of 2022 Senior Project presentations to get a sense of the variety of topics pursued.

Just last month Head of School Josh Harmon stepped into Mr. Brauch's college counseling class to address our seniors on how to get the most from senior year. It seemed worthwhile to share a sneak peek at what is happening in the uppermost grade at BASIS Independent Brooklyn.

Class of 2023 edited

Mr. Harmon's Address to Seniors (edited)

This is your year and your culminating year. I remember having many of you in class some six years ago, and how far you’ve come! I doubt the topic of high school graduation or senior year came up but even then–in the infancy of your secondary schooling days–everything you were doing was preparing you for this moment. I’m proud of you and grateful to be part of your learning. I sincerely care about you and your path and successes. I will be here for you 100 percent, but in return I ask you to do a few things:

 

Be a leader on this campus. There are students in every division of our school that look up to you and even if they don’t look up to you they recognize in you the most refined form of a student we have to offer. Show them the way.

 

Make choices that benefit you and your future. There is a lot you can't control in high school–to say nothing of life. You can’t control the choices other students make and your teachers make. You can’t control the situations you’re in most of the time. You can control your decisions. Make good ones that benefit you and your future.

 

 

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Finish strong. Finishing high school and securing a seat at the university of your choice is of course the goal. But set a tone for how you want your future years of learning to look. You will have the freedom this year to learn on your own and with mentors and advisors. This will be very much like the university experience. How will you fare in university? Determine that now by taking all the good habits you’ve had as learners and applying them now.

 

Have fun in finale style. This is it. The last year to be with one another in this setting and at this school. We are here for you and are committed to helping you make this year one of lasting memories and fun. If there is anything we can do to provide for you all, then don’t hesitate to ask.

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All of us—faculty and school leadership—are eager to be mentors on top of guiding students through the curriculum in a more traditional student-teacher model. Senior Projects are on the horizon, and we hope to tap the many connections in our community to help our students pursue their passions and further gauge interests before heading off to university.