The Bay School of San Francisco

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Cara Nelson » Bio


Name: Cara

Graduation Year: 2021
Middle School: San Francisco Day School
Hometown/Neighborhood: Inner Sunset, San Francisco
Athletics/Activities: Volleyball & Group X


Why did you choose to attend The Bay School?
I chose to attend The Bay School for many reasons. The first, and common reason, was the community. The community at Bay definitely stood out to me compared to other schools due to everyone being honest, open and kind. The main thing that stands out to me about Bay is the discussions we are insistent on having. These conversations consist of difficult topics to address, such as mental health or gun violence, and people's different experiences and views on these issues.

What has been your favorite class taken at Bay?
My favorite class at Bay has been Humanities. I like Humanities for many reasons, given that my two favorite subjects were English and History. I love Bay's Humanities department and curriculum because there is a wide range of individual work and thinking as well as Socratic seminars which allow us to hear many different perspectives on the topics being studied.

What is your favorite part of the Bay community?
How accepting and open-minded it is. One example of this is Morning Meeting. Morning Meeting is an opportunity for all of the students and faculty to come together as a community. In addition to this, it's an opportunity for both students and faculty to share any experiences or lessons they've learned, share a project from a class or simply a video that they think others in the community might benefit from. Morning Meeting is a great example of how accepting and open Bay is because there is no judgement or that many restrictions on what you can share and how.

What has been your most memorable experience at Bay?
During Humanities 1B, we did a simulation where each person was assigned a Congress person and we argued about refugees entering the country. I really valued this experience because I was able to learn about different views and perspectives on topics that I hadn't thought about before. In addition to this, these conversations allowed me to be able to authentically hear perspectives from classmates with different political views than me.

What would you tell yourself on the first day of your 9th grade year?
Everything will work itself out, just give it time. In addition to this, I would tell myself to not be afraid of stepping out of my comfort zone and trying to meet new people because different ideas and perspectives are important in order to understand the world and yourself better.

What advice would you give to prospective students who are considering Bay?
You should listen to how you feel about Bay (and every school). This includes what you have learned about the school and how that relates to you. Regarding Bay, I would tell them that it might not be a great fit for some kids and that it's important to try to distinguish and understand when a school is and isn't a good fit. Ways to do this are to look at each school's core values and how they compare to your own values as well as how the community thinks and acts. Bay values authenticity and learning from your mistakes as well as learning more about yourself through new experiences.