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Tony Belanger, ’98

“My teachers at BCD allowed for a kind of questioning and curiosity. My hunger for learning and understanding was encouraged and promoted each day. From BCD I went to Lenox High School and then on to college. I traveled to Japan and taught English. I continued my schooling and for my last class I taught English at a University in Shanghai. I love languages. I love education. I audit classes here at BCD because I like to learn from my former teachers.”“I had a preconceived notion that schools are for knowledge. I don’t think that any more. School is about learning how to think.”When asked what advice Tony could give to current students at BCD, he said, “Use your minds. Think, consider and challenge. Don’t be afraid to challenge ideas that teachers pose to you. Be willing to have a discussion.”

Julia Reynolds, ’11

“As a student at BCD, I learned to try new things, take on leadership roles, and work on projects I never thought would interest me. It’s real life. You have to interact with all different kinds of people.” “After graduating from BCD, I started at Pittsfield High School and then transferred to Darrow School in New Lebanon later in my sophomore year. The transition was a challenge, but the confidence I gained at BCD helped me find an environment that was smaller and more fitting for me.”“The collaborative group work and confidence I gained at BCD has been invaluable to me.”Advice from Julia: “Don’t be afraid to stick up for yourself. You don’t have to completely change because you are moving into a new phase of your life. It’s great to discover new parts of yourself.”

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Rebecca van der Meulen, ’13

At BCD I learned how to have a conversation with my teacher and others, not just sit in the back of the class and take notes. That has helped me a lot in high school.”“After graduating from BCD last year, I am now attending Buxton in Williamstown, Massachusetts, a boarding school of 80 students with a very strong arts program. I have continued my work in theater, music, and art that I began as a student at BCD.””There is such great academics at BCD, and I learned time management. At Buxton I am able to complete all my work and still have time to do the extra things I like to do.”When asked for her advice to current BCD students, Rebecca said, “Don’t be afraid to try new things.”

Quintin Pollart, ’11

“The thing I am most grateful for from my BCD education is the holistic approach to the humanities. Instead of just learning a list of vocabulary words and how sentence structure works, you learn how to think about literature and art.

It has helped me a lot.” “After attending BCD for ten years, I went to Berkshire School, which is where I am today. What I have found in high school is that all my passions from BCD are now magnified and focused. Art history, history, and music, which I studied at BCD, have evolved into independent projects in Renaissance learning, classical music, and woodworking.”“I thought I was going into high school to focus on academics and AP courses and getting into college. Instead, my Dean of Academics said to me, “Don’t look at the course catalog, make something up. So I built three classes for myself that didn’t exist before. I was able to explore my passions as well as taking four AP classes.”Advice from Quintin; “Go for it, academically, socially and artistically. Be out there. Don’t hold yourself back!

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Marcia Mitchell, ’98

“After BCD I went to Deerfield Academy and then Tufts where I majored in Economics. I worked for Morgan Stanley on the fixed incomes derivatives trading desk. I also had a seven-year career as a professional model. Now I am a social media manager for several accounts across the US with a small, startup company. I have found work that I really enjoy and I am having fun.” “BCD language studies allowed me to connect with people anywhere I traveled. No matter where I went I felt confident to breakdown what people were saying to me.”“Mr. Peterson helped me to realize that moving on to boarding school would require a significant emotional adjustment. I knew I was ready academically, but I didn’t realize the major personal adjustment I would need to make.”Advice from Marcia; “Make sure you stay open-minded as you go through different challenges in life and meet different people and encounter different situations.”

“Our daughter is thriving. She needed more of a challenge and she’s getting it at BCD. It’s rigorous, but still nurturing. Everyday she comes home so excited about something new. There are a lot of lively conversations at our dinner table!” –BCD parent

“In 7th grade, my son did a project on the global water crisis He was so moved, that with the encouragement of a community member, he raised money to help build a well in Africa. This summer he’s going to the village to volunteer.” –BCD parent

“It’s really wonderful to see the social curriculum in action. They don’t just talk about respect. They teach it.” –BCD parent

“Education is important to our family. We do what it takes. We sacrifice. That’s okay. The investment is worth it because the education BCD provides is truly shaping our children.” –BCD parent

“The girls that come out of BCD have a body of knowledge that’s surprisingly advanced. They are also poised and articulate leaders. When we get a girl from BCD, we know she’s ready for the kind of curriculum that is the trademark of a Miss Hall’s education.” –Miss Hall’s School

“The experiential learning program has opened my daughter’s eyes to a world outside of the Berkshires.  It takes science, the arts, languages, history, English, all of it and brings it to life.” –BCD parent

“We looked at a lot of preschools and the minute we walked onto the BCD campus, we knew we were home.” –BCD parent