The faculty, staff, and fellow students at Baymonte Christian School have made a positive impact on many lives throughout the fifty-one years Baymonte has been a school. We love receiving feedback from Baymonte Alumni about their time at our school.
Baymonte was an amazing school to grow up in. Baymonte wasn’t just a school but a family. I did not just have classmates but rather brothers and sisters. I did not just have teachers but rather mentors and people to look up to for guidance. Baymonte was a place of comfort and safety. It was a community filled with loving, kind and compassionate people. While there, I never felt alone or lacking love. The Baymonte teachers care for each individual student and make sure that they know it. What did I enjoy about Baymonte? I think I could say everything. From the field trips, to the birthdays in class, from the spirit days to the mission trips, Baymonte had it all. What a wonderful school Baymonte is and being a student there was both a blessing and a privilege.
Picking just one highlight from Baymonte is almost impossible. There were just so many wonderful experiences that I had there. If I had to pick a favorite though, I think I would say the time Baymonte took us on a mission trip to Mexico. I was always taught that you can spread the word of God everywhere and that there are many places who lack knowledge about His love, but being immersed in a completely different setting was utterly life-changing. I have to admit I was a little nervous and scared as I stepped into Tijuana for the first time. I didn’t know the language, or the people, or even really the culture. All I knew was that I wanted to help. Through my teachers pushing me, I stepped outside of my comfort zone, talked in a language I didn’t know and invited people to learn about the word of God. It is so different when you go on a mission trip than when you just hear about it. After that week in Mexico, I was never the same. The miracles I saw and the lives we touched, how could I ever go back to the way I was before? The point is I didn’t. I was changed in a way so great that it is so difficult to put into words. I became more confident in my faith, more willing to branch out as I shared the good news. I discovered my desperate need to share the gospel with others even when doing so may scare me. I also discovered how blessed I am and how selfish I can be. Over there in Mexico, the people have so little in comparison to me. And yet, they are still so happy and content in life. Baymonte gave me this opportunity, the opportunity to experience God’s love and His work in action. Since then I have gone back to that orphanage to see those I met once before in 7th grade. Things have changed so much there in Mexico. Without Baymonte, who knows if I would have ever pushed myself to have an experience like that. So out of all my experiences, I would have to say that the Mexico mission trip had to be the highlight of my Baymonte life.
There are many areas where Baymonte prepared me for high school. For example, the curriculum at Baymonte was an amazing base for the high school education. All the essays, DBQs, Socratic circles, stunningly hard math word problems, lab experiences and in-depth discussions concerning the Bible has helped me more in high school than I first realized. Through Baymonte, I have learned the basic structure format of an essay, how to analyze data, how to ask meaningful questions and so much more. Baymonte didn’t only prepare me educationally, but emotionally. Through the values taught at Baymonte, I have learned how to be confident in who I am and how to stay true to myself even when others pressure me. I have learned how to have in-depth conversations and how to love others through my actions rather than just my words. With Baymonte, I walked into high school ready (or as ready as a freshman could be) and have found myself using all the tools and resources provided for me every day.
I loved everything about being a student at Baymonte. But in looking back, what I appreciate perhaps most of all is the fact that everyone at Baymonte was truly attentive to my growth, providing fitting challenges and opportunities for me. It isn’t necessarily something one perceives at the time, but it really stands out in retrospect.
I think I could probably pick several highlights for each of my years from kindergarten through eighth grade. But there was one experience that ran through so many of those years. I was often dropped off for school fairly early in the morning, where I’d read or do work for a while. As the start of school day approached, I excitedly greeted all my friends – perhaps playing four square or chatting with them depending on the year – while looking forward to a new day of lessons.
Baymonte was an essential foundation for my future studies. It was a perfect school for an intellectually curious child, providing opportunities for learning both in and outside of the classroom. I look back on its exceptional faculty and staff, who were and are almost family, as models for teaching. But “the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom” and Baymonte built upon that most important of foundations even as it prepared me for the world.
After Baymonte, I graduated from Bellarmine College Preparatory in 2008, earned my A.B. from Princeton University in 2012, and earned my Ph.D. in History from the University of California, Berkeley in 2018. While at Berkeley, I met my wife, Aimee, who is a park ranger with the National Park Service. I’m currently a visiting lecturer at Berkeley, teaching courses on European history and revising my dissertation into a book manuscript.
I enjoyed so much about my time at Baymonte, so finding a place to begin is almost an impossible task. I think the easiest way to describe my student experience is to say that as I write this in my college dorm room, a picture of my BCS Class of 2013 sits on my desk to my left, filled with people that I still stay in contact with today. The fact that my Christian faith came to maturity with these people, or the fact that even when we went away to different high schools that we stayed in touched, there was something so special about the time I spent at school all those years ago.
I think one of the most influential elements of my Baymonte experience was the time I spent with my classmates at the lunch tables, eating together, sharing fellowship, and forging friendships that I still carry with me to this day. A central tenet Baymonte embraces when educating students is the education of the whole person. At the end of the day, it’s just as important that a student knows how to interact with those around them as it is that they excel in the classroom. The fact that this time still holds such value for me ten years later speaks volumes about how impactful Baymonte was in my formation as a young man.
Baymonte offered me numerous opportunities to excel in my studies and extracurricular activities. From the fantastic coursework in robotics to the innovative architecture classes, I learned so much about the variety of potential careers out there, and ultimately these interests drove me to perform well in my other coursework as well. The foundation I received at Baymonte Christian prepared me well for my high school career at Bellarmine College Preparatory in San Jose, and continues to serve me well as I finish my collegiate career at Boston College in Chestnut Hill MA.