|21 Jul 2021|
Seventy-nine students from 24 different nations walked across the stage today at the Bavarian International School (BIS) in Haimhausen. This group of global citizens is the 25th graduating class of the school and will certainly be a special group in the school’s 30-year history, as the only class to have experienced the majority of their 2-year programme in a global pandemic. In line with current Corona regulations, parents of the students were allowed to attend the ceremony, while siblings, grandparents and other family members watched via live stream.
"This graduation year will be like a badge you can wear on your chest, and you should wear it with pride. You fought hard for it," said class spokesman Henri Winter in his speech. The 18-year-old from Munich has learned to take positive lessons from the Corona crisis. "As a generation, this pandemic was perhaps the most valuable learning experience that we never knew we needed."
The rigours of the International Baccalaureate are challenging for most students under normal circumstances. Overcoming these hurdles in the midst of distance learning and quarantine is certainly remarkable, maybe even heroic. Perhaps this is why David Carney, BIS Humanities Teacher and selected speaker by the Class of 2021, chose an analogy of everyday heroes. "Look for heroes not on the silver screen, the football pitch or the olympic podium — but at eye level and within reach: the people in your life who have been afraid but did the right thing anyway and who have shown you by example how to be bold. Prize bravery over bravado. Prize all moments of bravery, even the small and unrecognized ones. When you have found some heroes, be like them. You can be heroic whenever you choose, whoever you are or wherever you are, without being perfect or celebrated."
Dr. Chrissie Sorenson, School Director and Executive Board of Bavarian International School, praised the graduating class of 2021 as well as the BIS teachers and staff who supported them. "The BIS graduating class of 2021 is a very special cohort that has mastered the majority of their last two years under Corona conditions. More than ever, our students will take with them a high level of perseverance, resilience, flexibility, and innovation on their future paths. I am extremely proud of our Class of 2021 and at the same time would like to express great gratitude and respect to our entire teacher and staff team for maintaining the highest educational quality despite these difficult times.”
Six students received awards for special achievements: Seán Jordan (Theory of Knowledge Award), Salome Forchheimer (Creativity, Activity, Service/CAS Award), Zara Ilijas (Service Award), Henri Winter (Community Award), Maria Kammermeyer (ECIS Award) and Eren Mitchell (Academic Excellence Award).
The graduates of the Class of 2021 plan to attend some of the best universities around the world and in Germany. For example, some of our graduates are accepted at the University of Oxford, Imperial College London, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität (LMU), universities in Madrid, Rotterdam, Budapest, St. Gallen, Vienna, Hong Kong or Edinburgh. Other graduates have opted for a gap year with social engagements or internships.