We are very much looking forward to our highly-anticipated Meet The Alumni Event on March 13 at 11 AM. Families are invited to join school leadership as well as nearly a dozen BASIS alumni from around the country as we reflect on their years at BASIS. Though BASIS Independent McLean is new to Northern Virginia, the BASIS name carries with it a legacy of preparing students to attend some of the world's best colleges and universities. The alumni who will be in attendance at the event are no exception. Currently attending Virginia Tech, Cornell, Brown, Duke, MIT, College of William & Mary, Yale, and Princeton, these former BASIS students embody the preparation for great things that a BASIS education affords. Leading up to March 13, we want to give you a sneak peek of some of the alumni that you will meet.

Anne Zlatow's recollections of her experiences with teachers, in particular, so keenly express how unique BASIS.ed educators are. Keep reading for more and be sure to register for the Meet The Alumni Event on March 13 at 11 AM!


Anne Zlatow - BASIS Oro Valley Class of 2014
College: Yale University, Class of 2014
Major(s): East Asian Languages & Literatures | Pre-Med

When you think of your BASIS teachers, what comes to mind? 

AZ: Mr. Aiken asking his 9th grade English class to define the word "is" on the first day of school; Mr. Aiken reciting "St. Crispen's Day Speech" from Shakespeare's Henry V as a pep talk minutes before we took our very first AP Exam; Ms. Fluitt (my college counselor/literature and psychology teacher) grabbing my hand and running around, disrupting every class to announce I was going to my dream school; Mrs. Shorbe driving us to/from National History Day Competitions and senior trips; Mr. Torrez singing Taylor Swift songs to help AP Chemistry students remember solubility rules; Mr. Thomas (my AP Calculus teacher) spending an entire afternoon and using more than 5 whiteboards to work with me in solving a tricky physics problem; etc.

Did you do a Senior Project? If so, what was it about?

AZ: I started learning Chinese at BASIS Oro Valley when I enrolled in 9th grade, and quickly found it to be my favorite subject. Entitled "Making Penguins Speak Chinese", my Senior Project was translating an English children's book about a penguin into Chinese. For the research component, I conducted an analysis of how cultural disparities influence text translations, as well as examined how translating from native to foreign language compared in difficulty to the reverse process. I met regularly with a Chinese language advisor and the author of the children's book, as well as maintained a blog to update my progress and findings. The goal was for my translation to match the original intent of the author as closely as possible; in working toward this, I ultimately improved my Chinese reading and writing skills tremendously.

What did you do to balance academics with things outside of school, like  your social life, extracurriculars, team sports, etc.? 

AZ: I played piano and flute, participated in history and Chinese proficiency competitions, practiced calligraphy, volunteered through tutoring and hospital internships, etc. Balancing the demands of a rigorous academic curriculum with life outside of school was challenging, but having the support of the BASIS community provided a foundation for success, while allowing - and encouraging - me to have fun exploring various interests.

Don't miss our Meet The Alumni Event on March 13 at 11 AM!

Do you have any questions for Anne? Leave them in the comments section, below: