BSGE Receives Its First 7 in IB Art! Reply

"ghost in your garden" by Adela Goldsmith '15 (Acrylic on Color Film, Feb 2015). See the rest of Adela's work at

“ghost in your garden” by Adela Goldsmith ’15 (Acrylic on Color Film, Feb 2015). See the rest of Adela’s work at

Smith College is filled with many bright young women pursuing art, but BSGE alum Adela Goldsmith ’15 can proudly say that she is one of the few who have earned a 7 in IB Higher Level Visual Arts – and not just any 7. Adela is the first BSGE student to receive a 7 in what many juniors and seniors believe is the most challenging IB course offered at our school.

Adela, whose work features a mix of dark imagery (run-down houses, severed hands, and tombstones) and bright, eye-catching colors, said that it was “cool” to get BSGE’s first 7, although the college credit she received for it is not stopping her from “taking a bunch of art classes anyway.” When asked about the general theme for her body of work, Adela explained that she focused on “decay (very broadly), but also how it relates to the human experience, and the relationship between the natural and the man-made.” She intends to stay involved in art through college, with a potential major in Art History and a Museums Concentration; “possibly careers in curating or museum education,” she said. More…


World From the Real World: Erin Camia ’14 Reply

This past year has been a lesson in learning that things are never impossible. It is possible to survive moving away from home and its comforts. It is possible for a New Yorker to have fun in Cleveland. It is possible for a BSGE graduate to completely switch gears and become an engineering major.

None of these things were particularly easy to learn, however. I felt ready to return to my parents forever when early in the first semester, I had a terrible ear infection that required a visit to the ER one night. I spent a few hours crying on the phone with my parents, partly because of the pain and partly because I realized adults have to take care of their own health. I eventually got the help I needed and even better, began a friendship with one of my best friends when she accompanied me to the hospital and bought me ice cream afterwards. More…

From BSGE, to Baruch, to Goldman Sachs: Alumnus Gautier Godard 1

Congratulations on your internship at MetLife! What is your position?

Thank you, the position I was giving was called Business Planning & Strategy, which was essentially an Operations function within MetLife’s Global Employee Benefits (GEB) division who – after the acquisition of Alico – leveraged its insurance capabilities to sell insurance products to multinationals.

Photo Credit: Gautier Godard

Photo Credit: Gautier Godard

What are your responsibilities?

The day-to-day consisted overwhelmingly in handling big data and working in tandem with upper management to create dashboards and/or reports that would help them efficiently complete their daily functions. After meeting people within the company, I was put on bigger projects which aimed to enhance division-wide efficiency. These projects were the most rewarding, as they allowed me to get a better feel for how the division worked, gain a deeper understanding of the products, and work with cross-functional teams which gave me insight into other positions available within MetLife.  More…

Word from the Real World: Samantha Calpo Reply

As I sit still waiting for my Psychology lecture to begin, my professor holds out his hands, wiggles his hips and sings, “Now, let’s get this show on the road!” How familiar a dance it was, as it was the same little movement that Jim Napolitano used to do during Math SL.

“When picking your sources, make sure there is no bias,” my Writing teacher says.  I can almost see Jennifer cringing all the way in BSGE at the sound of that.

“I like to make the answers to quizzes all the same letter, and watch students squirm,” my Chemistry professor gleefully admits. (No one likes him.)

“I am a tutor, an upper year, a friend, and a resource. I only want you guys to exceed in what you do and carry on that selflessness to the next generation,” writes my Physics tutor in his two-page email.

These are just some of the lines that I constantly hear throughout my days as a freshman in college.

My name is Samantha and I am from BSGE’s Class of 2014.  I am a current first-year student at The Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education (I must have a thing for schools with long names), which is part of the City College of New York.  Sophie Davis is a seven-year medical program that aims to do two things: medically serve the underserved communities, and increase the presence of primary care physicians. More…

Effect of Ferguson Decision On BSGE Family Reply

The Washington Post recently came out with poll results stating that “48% of adults approved of the decision not to indict the police officer who shot and killed an unarmed black teenager.” The poll referred to the fatal shooting of Michael Brown, an 18-year-old unarmed black male who was murdered on August 8th, 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri, a suburb of St. Louis. Brown was shot by 28-year-old police officer Darren Wilson, who was announced as not indicted by a St. Louis County grand jury on November 24, 2014.

The Ferguson jury decision caused much uproar across the country, including in the BSGE community (both student body and alumni). The Bacc Rag collected photos and videos of some of the ways members of the BSGE family spoke out against the Ferguson decision. More…

BSGE Demystifies IB Reply

Have you ever wondered what our school name BSGE means? It stands for Baccalaureate School for Global Education and it refers to the IB (International Baccalaureate) program established in BSGE in 2005. The IB program has been applied to over 4,000 schools (public and private) in 147 countries, over one quarter of them in the United States and 24 in New York. Students of these schools are aged 3-19. Our school focuses on two of the four programs, the pre-diploma program and the diploma program. In this program students aged 16-19 follow a rigorous two-year curriculum leading to the final examinations. This program helps students to develop physically, emotionally, More…

BSGE Alumnus Jolijt Tamanaha Sells Company, has New Start Up Reply

Farmplicity copyBSGE Alumnus and former BACC Rag editor, Joijt Tamanaha recently sold her St. Louis based startup company, Farmplicity, to Sunfarm Food Service in May 2014 for an undisclosed sum.

Ms. Tamanaha (BSGE Class of 2011) created the company as part of an entrepreneurship class at Washington University in St Louis where she is currently a student. The company was created to allow local farmers to sell their produce, fruits, and meats to area restaurants through a simple,


Cool Alumni Series: Stephanie Aristakesian Reply

Stephanie Aristakesian always had somewhat of an obsession for Hollywood and fame. Even her BSGE teachers could see that from her 10th grade Personal Project: “How to Meet the Jonas Brothers.” (Unfortunately she never achieved her goal of meeting the JoBros. However, she did meet American Idol star Sanjaya Malakar.) Fortunately for this 2011 BSGE graduate, she is pursuing her dream as Executive Director of the Concerts Committee at the University of Southern California where she is currently majoring in Communications and minoring in Business Administration.

Stephanie & Diplo

Stephanie & Diplo

Aristakesian is a current Junior at USC and has made many accomplishments in her career as Executive Director. In 2013 she brought Jason Derulo, Heather McDonald (Chelsea Lately), Steve Rannazzisi (The League) and R3hab. She couldn’t believe she could ever top her accomplishments after putting together USC’s “Welcome Back” concert, which had an attendance of over 6,000 people. But on April 5th, Aristakesian brought world-famous DJ and rapper Diplo to perform at USC’s Spring Fest. The concert was a success; even Diplo himself raved about the concert on his Instagram and Facebook account.

Diplo Performing at USC

Diplo Performing at USC


BSGE Alumni: George Itzhak’s New Film Reply

BSGE has existed for a mere ten years, but within these ten years our school has produced some amazing alumni who have gone on to do amazing things.

One of these aspiring alumni is George Itzhak, a student who graduated in 2010 who went on to attend New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. Itzhak is a senior now, majoring in Film and Television Production.

Itzhak had always been a committed student in his Visual Art HL class throughout his years at BSGE, but now he is channeling his talent and passion of working with art into a different medium: film.

The Uzbekistani student had many dreams of working with More…

BSGE Alumnus, Jolijt Tamanaha, Launches Her Own Company Reply

Jolijt Tamanaha (BSGE class of 2011) recently created a company called Farmplicity whose goal is to put local farmers in touch with local restaurants in the St. Louis area.

Farmplicity copy

(Click on the image to visit the site)

Ms. Tamanaha created the company as part of an Entrepreneurship class at Washington University in St. Louis where she is currently a Sophomore. She said, “I’ve learned so much from actually launching the company. I highly recommend taking any class that teaches you through hands on experience.”

She also maintains a food blog at:

Her company was featured in two St. Louis newspapers (see links below).

Curriculum Night 2012 Reply

IMG_1064Earlier this year on November 5th, BSGE held Curriculum Night, a night when BSGE parents were able to meet teachers. From 6:30 to 8:30pm, parents of BSGE students walked around the school and “attended” classes according to their child’s schedule. Each class was about 9 minutes long and the parents had 4 minutes to get from class to class. In each classroom, the parents got to meet the teachers of each of the subjects that their child took. As stated clearly on the flyers and on the BSGE website, this was not a night for one-on-one talks about specific students and their performance in their classes. Instead, the parents were introduced to the courses, the structure and the expectations of the classes. Some teachers handed out course outlines, materials and binder information, and syllabi, while some handed out tips and helpful information for the success of the students. At some point during the night, each “grade” had 2 periods for time in the cafeteria. This time was devoted for socializing, getting refreshments, and talking to students and alumni of BSGE. There, parents talked to other parents – some More…

Word from the Real World: Jolijt Tamanaha

Towards the end of my senior year at BSGE, one of my friends, Kristopher Kesoglides said: “college is what you make it.” Now that it is the end of my freshman year at Washington University in St. Louis, I can confidently say that he couldn’t have been more right.
Seniors, you can spend the next four years hating where you are. It’s easy, I’ll tell you how: arrive knowing you’re going to hate the school, judge your classmates immediately, and blame everyone else for everything that goes wrong.
Or you can spend the next four years indifferent to where you are. It’s even easier: don’t sign up for activities, only talk to people who talk to you, and take classes you know you’ll do well in.
Or you can spend the next four years loving where you are. That’s a lot harder and I can’t tell you how. But I can tell you that I love it at Wash U.
Some people are unbearably strange and others are unbearably annoying. Some classes are so boring and others are so difficult. I’ve spent many weekends doing nothing but trying desperately to catch up on work.  Yet, I absolutely love it. I avoid the annoying people, entertain myself by staring at the strange people, drop the boring classes, and work through the difficult ones. I’ve made friends who are fascinating, loving, and fun. I’ve had amazing experiences. And I still get three more years.
It’s not always sunshine and butterflies. Sometimes I love it less. Right now, I’m sick of studying for finals, sick of writing essays, and sick of my tiny dorm room. But it’s still only partially cloudy (please excuse my nauseatingly corny extended metaphor).
So Seniors, please don’t stress about where you’re going. You’ll love it if you let yourself love it. Have a great summer everyone. And congratulations to the Seniors!

Word from the Real World: Jolijt Tamanaha Reply

The strangest thing about leaving for college is going back home. It’s beyond weird to pack a suitcase, board a plane, land in a place, and hug people that used to be so everyday and now feel so far away.
Throughout all of Thanksgiving break, I wondered how real my life at college is. Cooking dinner while my friends sat around the kitchen laughing made it feel like I’d never left, like I had imagined moving out. But as soon as I landed back in St. Louis, I realized that my life here is far from fake because More…

Word from the real World: Jolijt Tamanaha Reply

While frantically fanning the smoke alarm with a Wheat Thins box I thought, “third day of orientation and I’m already learning something.”  That something was that you should never put an English Muffin in the microwave for longer than a minute. I also learned to always wear shoes when you leave your room because chances are, if you’re like me, you will
your key.
to the
isn’t fun
(that was
the fifth
in five
days—that I got locked out).
I learned that you should just sign up for every club that sounds even a little bit interesting because (a) you can always un-sign up and (b) they have free food at the meetings.
I learned to actually read the label More…

Word from the Real World: Jolijt Tamanaha Reply

Before starting, I heard countless warnings about the difficulty of college.  I walked into my first class fully expecting a cruel, heartless professor and incredibly complicated work. After all, the favorite line of some BSGE teachers is: “In college, the professors won’t care about you at all.”
I’ve only had caring professors. Professor Welman brought in More…

BSGE Class of 2011 Receives a Record Number of IB Diplomas Reply

                         The Class of 2011 at Graduation.                             Photo Credit: Ms Van Schilfgaarde

BSGE’s Class of 2011 received a school record 36 IB Diplomas last year. Of the 64 students who graduated in 2011, 55 were IB Diploma candidates and 36 students received enough points to earn the full IB diploma, a major achievement for the students and the school. “They worked together to support each other in the gauntlet of senior year and the IB exam process. Hopeful- ly this will continue to benefit them in their college years” said 12th grade IB History of the Americas teacher and Diploma coordinator, Ms. Jennifer Dikes.

In addition to their hard work, Ms. Connie You, 10th and 11th grade English teacher, identified More…

Graduation 2011 Reply

The 2011 commencement ceremony took place at the Queens Theater in the Park. The master of ceremonies was Mr. Tim David Lang. Student Jolijt Tamanaha gave the first speech and was followed by student Nathan Nickolic. The adult speakers picked by the students were Ms. Jennifer Dikes, Mr. Virge Ramos, and Ms. Lily Shen. Ms. Johnson gave the final speech and the graduates then all walked up onto the stage and recived their diploma. The students closed the ceremony by dancing to a mash up of “Time of My Life” and “The Show Goes On.”