The following Graduation Awards were presented to standout members of TASIS The American School in Switzerland’s Class of 2022 at the School’s 66th Commencement Ceremony on the morning of May 28, 2022. Each award listing includes the citation that was read as the award was presented.
Excellence in Art
Presented by Fine Arts Department Chair Martyn Dukes
Art is a language through which every artist hopes to find a voice, and for over 60 years art at TASIS has been the means by which countless students have been able to give expression to this idea.
I have taught this year's recipient for a number of years and had the privilege of watching her grow as an artist. This student uses the tools of her craft effortlessly, and this is particularly reflected in portraiture based on her life and experiences. The resulting paintings and prints are authentic, their honesty giving us a sense of someone engaged in the language and able to communicate, able to tell their story—something she will undoubtedly continue to explore as she makes her way to London and art school next September.
The recipient of this year’s graduation award for Excellence in Art is Najedah Tamer.
The Horst Dürrschmidt Excellence in Photography Award
Presented by Visual Arts Department Chair Martyn Dukes
The TASIS Visual Arts Department award in Photography honors the memory of former photography instructor and department chairman Horst Dürrschmidt, whose vision, leadership, and creative energy helped to shape what the arts mean at TASIS.
As students returned to the TASIS campus in the autumn of 2020, a small but dedicated group of photographers emerged who dedicated themselves to experimenting and practicing film photography and learning to print from their negatives. An international group, these students shared resources, expertise, equipment, and experience. These students were not enrolled in advanced art or photography classes, given their commitments to demanding AP and IB schedules, but chose to work outside of class time, coming to the darkroom during evenings and weekends to pursue their ideas and feed their curiosity. One student in particular was especially dedicated to his darkroom work and has remained especially generous in sharing his knowledge and advice.
For his kindness and good humor, and for his risk-taking and vision, the 2022 Horst Dürrschmidt Award for Excellence in Photography goes to Matvey Kolesnichenko.
Excellence in Architecture and Design
Presented by Visual Arts Department Chair Martyn Dukes
This year’s award goes to a student with considerable powers of invention and the skill to realize her ideas. Over the course of two years in the Architecture and Design course, this student produced drawings and models demonstrating ingenuity and creative problem-solving within the fine art context of architecture. The award is given to recognize the handsome results she achieved in this field at TASIS.
I am pleased to give the Excellence in Architecture and Design Award to Olivia Garcia-Atance Arimont.
The Bertha Seifert Award for Excellence in Music
Presented by Performing Arts Department Chair Agela Carota Dusing
I have had the pleasure of getting to know this wonderful young lady a bit over the past semester. She has been active in the Music Department for all of her years at TASIS and has taken every music class and lesson that her schedule would allow.
She has consistently performed as a solo singer and as a chorister. Her lovely soprano voice could often be heard in the lower level of the Palestra as she worked with her voice teachers and coaches over the years. Additionally, I have had the pleasure of teaching most of my classes this year in the room across from the piano studio, so I was able to listen to this student as she prepared her piano solos for the recent Spring Arts Festival Music Concert. She has also worked as a collaborative instrumentalist in the ensemble, where she played the violin. As a result of her hard work, her performances have been exemplary, and I have been struck by the amount of progress that she has made, particularly over this past year.
Truly, the hours that she puts into the improvement of her craft are remarkable. She intends to build a career in music and is headed to the UK very soon to study at the Royal Northern College of Music. For her dedication to music, commitment to excellence, exemplary talent, and strong work ethic, it is my pleasure and honor to award the Bertha Seifert Award for Excellence in Music to Sarah Sofya Rappoport.
The Kay Hamblin Award for Excellence in Theater
Presented by Performing Arts Department Chair Samantha Forrest
This year's recipient of the Kay Hamblin Theater Award approached each class and rehearsal with passion, creativity, and an attention to detail. He worked with a particular brand of creative insistence, determined to bring out the honesty of a given moment within a play or scene. This insistence helped our theater group push through moments of complacency to reach toward excellence.
As a collaborator, this young man contributed great ideas as a writer, director, actor, and lighting designer. Despite studying theater for the first time this year, he demonstrated courage and a willingness to take risks onstage, taking on new characterizations with both a light-hearted sense of humor and deep sincerity.
It is an honor to present the Kay Hamblin Theater Award to Filipp Ermakov.
Excellence in English as an Additional Language
Presented by EAL Department Chair Carolyn Heard
This year, the English as an Additional Language Award is given in recognition of a student who has distinguished herself among her peers in her IB English B class by not only successfully meeting all the challenges of the course but also by displaying a sincere desire to enrich her understanding of the material and to contribute to the classroom experience through posing thoughtful questions and making astute observations. She has approached each assignment with a seriousness of purpose and a level of maturity that have been exemplary, achieving a markedly improved command of the English language in the process.
We are pleased to present the Graduation Award in English as an Additional Language to Alina Leger.
Excellence in Modern Languages
Presented by Modern Languages Department Chair Ania Shields
The Modern Languages Department takes great pleasure in recognizing exceptional achievements in the acquisition of modern languages. This year is a bit unusual in that we are presenting this award to two very deserving recipients. Both students took a second-year IB HL language class, one in French and one in Spanish, because they wanted to deepen their understanding of that respective language and culture—and naturally both performed outstandingly, and this after having each taken the AP exam last year and receiving a score of 5. Both students also took the second year IB Ab Initio Italian class their senior year, going directly from level 1 to level 3 and still excelling with a score of 7.
These two students truly demonstrate a curious mind and a distinctive talent for easily learning and retaining not one but two additional languages during their high school careers. I have no doubt that they will both find the thirst for learning more languages as they embark on their professional journeys in the real world.
The Department of Modern Languages is immensely proud to announce the winners of this year’s Excellence in Modern Languages Award: Carly Bachofen and Payton Clardy.
The Cynthia Whisenant Award for Excellence in English Literature
Presented by English Department Chair Dr. Christopher Love
The winner of this year’s Cynthia Whisenant Award for English Literature wrote a ten-page essay on Plato’s Republic in which she analyzed the ways that language reveals ideals for those who aim to live for the sake of the good. She wrote this essay in ninth grade. In 10th Grade, in Honors World Literature, after finishing her presentation on the Polish poet Czesław Miłosz, her classmates and I erupted into applause, inspired and informed by her recital and analysis. In her grade comment, I wrote, “The observations you made enlightened not only the poem itself, but the act of reading and writing poetry.” That same year, this student wrote a modern adaptation of a Canto from Dante’s hell, in which her Virgil, her wódz, the Polish dissident and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Lech Walesa, led her through the netherworld of a Gdańsk Shipyard. Emblematic of this student’s ability to meld the creative and critical acts as a means of moral exploration, this student’s Canto scrutinized the roles that language, exile, poetry, and political courage played in her home country’s modern history. As a capstone to her literary studies in 10th Grade, this student examined the ways in which Dante and Miłosz “delineated topographies of poetic sanctuary.” Her Higher Level IB Literature Essay discussed the ways that the Russian novelist Mikhail Bulgakov correlated language and systems of authority. This essay was yet another passionate advocacy for the power of art to protect and achieve freedom.
So far, I have only mentioned this student’s penetrating and eloquent academic work. What truly sets this student apart is her leadership and vision in advocating for the cause of literature. Not only did she single-handedly spearhead the TASIS Literary Journal, she inspired her classmates to devote themselves to creative writing. In our monthly meetings of the Dante Club, she contributed wise and discerning insights into Dante’s Purgatory. There are a number of younger students in this club, and a few of them have cited this student’s outsized influence in their own literary education. As if these extracurricular commitments to literature at TASIS were not enough, this student formed and led a student book club. Each month, this student and her peers chose challenging novels and discussed their intricacies with passion and acumen.
For her unparalleled love of literature and contributions to TASIS’s life of arts and letters, and for her devotion to language as a means of understanding and expressing moral concern, Alexia Dochnal is the 2022 recipient of the Cynthia Whisenant Award for Excellence in English Literature.
Excellence in History
Presented by History Department Chair Daniel Kirsch
This year’s recipient of the Excellence in History Award is an active member of the TASIS family. She has excelled in all of her History Department courses since she started studying at TASIS. Her grade 11 teacher calls her a “rock star,” as well as one of the hardest working and most consistent students in his classes. Her grade 12 teacher notes her willingness to share her experiences from other history classes with younger students in an effort to help them learn and avoid errors. That is just who she is: a leader and a helper. She is also known for being a bit sarcastic…but only when the situation warrants.
It is my honor to present the 2021–2022 Excellence in History Award to Carly Bachofen.
The Shah Akbar Khan Award for Excellence in Mathematics
Presented by Math Department Chair James Shields
The Department of Mathematics takes great pleasure in recognizing work that is characterized by curiosity, industry, and professionalism applied to the study, and practice, of mathematics. When that work is graced with cleverness and creativity, the usual reward of excellent grades is insufficient, and recognition such as this is required.
In addition to earning excellent grades, this year’s award winner is the author of work of uncommon sophistication. In his extended essay, he developed the theory of first and second order difference equations, and he applied it to problems in economic modeling. In other work, he applied variational techniques to study elasticity of demand.
His teachers can be proud of their association with such talent, and therefore the Department of Mathematics is pleased to announce that the winner of the Shah Akbar Khan Award for Excellence in Mathematics is Noe Matozzo.
Excellence in Science
Presented by Science Department Chair Alec Ogilvie
Although as is the case every year, there were many good science students, this year one clearly stood out and was a unanimous choice. He lived, ate, and breathed science; indeed, he actually took three IB science courses: Environmental Systems and Societies, Biology, and the most important one, Chemistry. This is very rare indeed, and to do so with such dedication was incredible. He not only excelled in the classes, but he was constantly in the science pep rooms doing extra experiments. He made some interesting compounds and really developed his experimental techniques—nothing was ever too much of a challenge for him.
His enthusiasm for the sciences was contagious, in and out of the classroom. He often had other students in the chemistry prep room, showing them what he had made or illustrating a particular technique. It was wonderful to see.
It is with real pleasure that the Science Department awards this year's Excellence in Science prize to Marcello Mastronardi.
The Salutatorian Scholarship Award
Presented by Head of High School Academic Dr. Mark Abisi
The academic achievements of this year’s Salutatorian loom large. Her quiet diligence, ceaseless curiosity, meticulous preparation, and big-hearted engagement in a variety of fields and interests contributed to consistently high levels of achievement in every subject to which she devoted herself. While she excelled in the sciences, mathematics, languages, and the humanities, it was the consilience among these disciplines that stands testament to her academic attainment. To understand the depth and breadth of these attainments, we need only turn to her teachers:
Her AP Statistics teacher noted that she consistently performed at the highest level in her class. Quietly digesting and mastering the material, diligently finishing all homework assignments, and applying her laser-like focus to in-class instruction, she consistently achieved very high results on her exams. What impressed her teacher the most was her willingness to help her friends understand concepts she had already mastered.
Her English teacher said, “She read, spoke, and wrote with the kind of intention and attention that made the literature matter to everyone around her. Her Honors World Literature presentation and analysis of Pablo Neruda’s poetry and her final comparative essay on Dante and Tolstoy were stellar examples of moral and aesthetic insight. Her modern adaptation of a Canto from Dante’s Inferno honored the glories and tribulations of her home country of Venezuela. Her comments in class revealed a level of wisdom and discernment far beyond her years.”
Her Italian teacher said, "She is the student we teachers hope to encounter in our careers. What distinguishes her is her curiosity, her drive to learn new concepts. Another unique trait is her deep respect for adults and for her classmates.”
Her advisor noted that teachers would often email him out of the blue praising her commitment to learning, her exemplary comportment, and her quiet generosity of spirit.
With a determination, curiosity, generosity, and sheer intellectual breath recognized by faculty and fellow students alike, Alejandra Cova has earned the distinction of this year’s Salutatorian honors.
The Valedictorian Scholarship Award
Presented by Academic Dean Dr. Mark Abisi
There are many students at TASIS and indeed in high schools all over the world who are remarkably intelligent, extraordinarily talented, or incredibly hardworking—but there are very few who can lay claim to all three of these attributes. Our recipient for the Valedictorian Award can do just that, and that is how you find a person who, well before her 18th birthday, has trained at a world-class ballet academy, has mastered some of the most difficult piano pieces ever written, has learned five languages, has published her own literary magazine, and has founded a Movement Outreach Service Learning group, a Literature Club, and a Students for Social Justice Club at TASIS.
Yes, she has also earned a 4.0 GPA, achieved a near-perfect score on the SAT, and been predicted by her teachers to ace all of her IB exams. But she is so much more than that. She is as empathetic as she is ambitious, as lyrical as she is precise, and as affable as she is bookish. She has a poetic soul, a passion for social justice, and an insatiable curiosity that drives her to study not for the sake of attaining perfect grades but for the ultimate pursuit of truth, goodness, and beauty.
In the words of her English Literature teacher, “Her essays, creative work, contributions to discussion, and literary analysis now form our school’s highest examples of insight, moral intelligence, aesthetic judgment, and a truly honorable devotion to the humanities.” Her math teacher adds, “She is simply an amazing student. She is intelligent, diligent, and thorough, and on her mock IB exam she only missed one mark! It may be true that her greatest strengths lie in the humanities, but I have every confidence that her determination and will to succeed will earn her a 7 on the Math exam as well.”
Described by more than a few of her teachers as the best student they’ve ever had, it should come as no surprise that our recipient is headed to Yale University to take part in a special academic program for first-year students called Directed Studies, for which she was hand-picked due to her “truly exceptional academic record and broad intellectual interests.” Throughout what promises to be an intense freshman year, she will be taught by top scholars from across the humanities and encouraged to draw from thousands of years of literature, philosophy, history, and politics to develop her own sense of how to navigate some of life’s great questions. I can think of no better next step for the remarkable Valedictorian of the Class of 2022, Alexia Dochnal.
The Headmaster’s Awards
Presented by Headmaster Christopher Nikoloff
This year’s recipient of the Headmaster’s award is a core member of the TASIS community who has not only excelled in the classroom with a most challenging program but has committed herself to others with deep passion since her arrival in sixth grade.
In terms of her academic accomplishments, she has earned highest honors during all four years of High school. What makes this student most remarkable is her deeply artistic and reflective nature. She sees between the lines and has insights that go beyond the curriculum. She is as much an artist as she is a philosopher, researcher, and entrepreneur in nature. We are convinced that she will flourish in a liberal arts and science environment where her intelligence, artistry, humanity, and incredible drive can be given the freedom to explore, learn, and investigate to her heart's content.
You simply do not forget this student when you meet her. She carries a presence that is at once joyful while at the same time focused and engaged on the moment at hand. Thanks to her care for her fellow students, commitment to curiosity and learning, and desire to build a deeper sense of campus community, she has contributed positively to TASIS in countless ways.
She has always grasped the importance of approaching everyone with kindness and respect and resisting the rush to judgment that pervades society today. Her approachability is natural, and she is adept at reaching out to students across all grade levels, doing so with tremendous energy, and she motivates other students to get on board with important initiatives and participate in school activities. Helping launch our Students for Social Justice Club and being committed yearly to service learning and school government has been a core mission for her. Combine this with her having been elected Co-President of Student Council this year, and you can see a clear acknowledgement of how valued she is in our student community. Moreover, she is involved in the TASIS Speaker Series, is a member of the Service Learning Board, and has been elected to serve as the TASIS Alumnae Agent for the class of 2022. With intelligence, determination, and care, she will no doubt make meaningful contributions throughout her life just as she has done during her time at TASIS.
I am pleased to announce this year’s recipient of the Headmaster’s Award: Valentina Alencar Barros.
The ECIS Award for International Understanding
Presented by Headmaster Christopher Nikoloff
The ECIS Award for International Understanding is awarded to a student who is a good representative of his or her own country, displays a positive attitude toward the life and culture of others, is able to converse in at least two languages, is a contributing force in the life of the school, and demonstrates the ability to bring different people together into a sense of community, thus furthering the cause of international understanding.
This student encompasses this award because of her international spirit and drive to make connections with people from all over the world. Numerous faculty have commented that this student is always seen socializing with everyone on campus. She has a wide variety of friends, and she strives to listen, include, and have compassion for everyone, regardless of nationality.
She has also been an integral member of the Model UN for four years, assuming a leadership role in her senior year. She also spent time working with diplomats in Rome last summer, specifically to increase relations with Kazakhstan, and she is very interested in pursuing work in translation.
This student is fluent in Kazakh, Russian, English, French, and Italian, yet perhaps most impressively, she communicates with fellow TASIS students in all of these languages, truly embodying the nature of this award. Her advisor writes that her understanding of many languages and cultures enabled her to really bring the advisor group together, making sure that everyone was involved in the activities. Her ability to cross cultural and linguistic divisions is a powerful tool, and one that will surely serve her well in the future.
For all four years of High School, she was involved with many different aspects of TASIS life, including academic travel, sports, student council, and residence life. For her positive attitude toward the life and culture of others, I am pleased to present the ECIS Award for International Understanding to Zhamilya Mussaibekova.
The Jan Opsahl Service Award
Presented by Headmaster Christopher Nikoloff
The Jan Opsahl Service Award recognizes a student for whom the school community comes before self. This award acknowledges students who contributed to the school community and to school life beyond the call of duty. Academic excellence by itself does not qualify a student for this award: the faculty often chooses a candidate who is giving of themselves in quiet ways.
There were two outstanding candidates for the Jan Opsahl Service Award this year, so our faculty decided to confer two awards. Our first recipient is the type of student who is determined to take advantage of all TASIS has to offer. She throws herself into every endeavor with a passion that is infectious, and no matter what is going on in her life or in the world around her, she maintains a relentlessly positive attitude and is always willing to lend her ear to a friend in need.
Her upbeat nature, empathetic soul, and selflessness make her an ideal proctor in the dormitory, where she is viewed as a role model by both her peers and dorm parents. “She effortlessly shows compassion, warmth, and guidance toward the younger students and takes a genuine interest in their lives, making them feel heard and understood,” noted one of her dorm parents. “Many students in her dorm are now applying to be proctors themselves and have cited her as their inspiration for doing so,” said another.
A three-time member of the student-directed Service Learning Board, she has been described as “a relationship builder who is endlessly solution-oriented.” Her leadership and vision helped the group push forward an Environmental Action Week initiative and a project that focused on self-acceptance on Valentine’s Day, and she has provided invaluable support for fundraisers and awareness campaigns for the Global Service Program’s many local and global partners.
After the pandemic robbed her of the opportunity to attend a service trip her junior year, she jumped at the chance to travel to Thailand to learn about human-elephant conflict over the School’s two-week spring holiday this April. One of the faculty leaders of that trip described her contributions as follows: “She’s the most positive person I’ve ever met. No matter how bad the heat got, how much the mosquitoes were biting, or how harsh the travel conditions were, she maintained a positive energy and set the tone for the rest of the group. She was also really invested in learning about human-elephant conflict and took the purpose of the trip to heart. It was clear that she was there to learn about the issues deeply, make concrete changes in her own life, and share that knowledge with others upon her return in order to further the impact of the trip.”
For her indomitable spirit, her strong but unassuming leadership, and her commitment to putting others before herself, I am delighted to present the Jan Opsahl Service Award to Carly Bachofen.
* * *
Our second recipient has been at TASIS for two years, and she immediately integrated into the community with ease, grace, and compassion for others. Her advisor notes, “As a fellow ‘newbie,’ she was the first TASIS student I met back in August of 2020, and it was wonderful for me to go into my first advisor group meeting and see a familiar face. Several of us were new to our advisory group last year, but you would have never known that this student was one of them. She made friends and assimilated to TASIS so easily it almost made me jealous!”
This student was also a proctor, and her dorm parents describe her in one word: awesome. She developed close relationships with other students in the dorm, and they could always count on her to help out whenever needed. Her patience, good-nature, and ability to treat others with kindness and empathy are unatched. She has been a wonderful and supportive friend to her peers, has served as an excellent role model for younger students, and has really made the most of her two years here.
Volunteering has been an integral part of her entire life, so it’s no surprise that she became very involved in the Global Service Program and has given tirelessly of herself. “What she does for GSP truly embodies the spirit of this award,” notes the program’s director, who recently traveled with her to Thailand, where she was an invaluable leader. She has done everything during her time at TASIS to ensure that she does all she can to make a positive impact on others and our community. She plans to embark on several service projects during her upcoming gap year and to eventually pursue a career in service.
For her positivity, compassion, and authentic love to serve others, it is with great pleasure that I present the Jan Opsahl Service Award to Payton Clardy.
The Michael Ulku-Steiner Leadership Award
Presented by Headmaster Christopher Nikoloff
Michael Ulku-Steiner served as TASIS’s Headmaster for five years. He currently sits on the TASIS Foundation Board and is Head of School at Durham Academy in the United States. This award recognizes the student or students who have shown initiative, creativity, and disinterested involvement in making our school a better place to study and to live in. For example, student council, committee, or student activity work may qualify a student. The award generally has been given to a student recognized as a leader (in the furthering of TASIS goals and ideals) by both the students and the faculty.
This year’s recipient of The Michael Ulku-Steiner Leadership Award is highly regarded as a proctor both for his uncanny maturity and the kind and considerate way he interacts with students. He is an inspiration to other students, who listen when he speaks and routinely look to him for guidance. Dependable, willing, and helpful, he has been described as “the go-to person if you’re looking for someone to support you” and as “an ambassador for students, teachers, and dorm parents who are new to TASIS.”
His advisor adds, “He has been a great leader and a true friend to everyone in our advisor group, including me. He made it a point to help me adjust to TASIS when I came to the school in the fall of 2020. He also came to my rescue with his rugby-injury skills and lent me some magic spray and showed me how to wrap my thumb when I injured it skiing last winter. He has had a demanding and stressful schedule during the two years that I have known him, but he always has a smile on his face and manages to make time to be friendly, thoughtful, and helpful to his teachers and classmates.”
His teachers describe him as hard-working, creative, and intellectually curious. “He’s the kind of student who reads articles on his own, simply for his own interest,” noted one. “If he finds something interesting, he simply goes for it.” His photography teacher added, “He often worked in the dark room on his own and even built a dark room in his home so that he could continue to print and develop his skills.”
Our recipient has also been a standout leader on the athletic fields—he was the driving force behind the rugby program as a 9th grader and served as a captain despite his young age—and has consistently brought energy and initiative to his Global Service Program group. Intent on finding ways to improve the world in whatever way he can, he also attended the Global Issues Network conference with TASIS as an underclassman. He furthers his initiatives by always looking for ways to empower others to get involved.
For his kindness, perception, patience, and determination—the hallmarks of a great leader—I am delighted to present the The Michael Ulku-Steiner Leadership Award to Alessandro Carlesimo.
The H. Miller Crist Award
Presented by Headmaster Christopher Nikoloff
H. Miller Crist is the father of TASIS founder Mary Crist Fleming. He established the former Mary Lyon School for girls and Wildcliff Junior College. His portrait hangs in the Mary Crist Fleming Library. This award in his name is given to the senior student who, in the opinion of the faculty, best represents the ideals and goals of the school. This is the highest recognition accorded by the TASIS faculty to a senior who, by his/her actions (academic and otherwise), best embodies or pursues the ideals, aspirations, and goals of the School. In some ways, the award combines the stipulations of the Service and Leadership Awards with an expectation of academic excellence.
A quick tally of this student’s achievements, interests, and activities is gobsmacking and necessarily insufficient. On the academic front, she earned salutatorian honors and straight A’s through her three years at TASIS. In the world of sports, she was the 2021–2022 Athlete of the Year, recognized for her talents and contributions on the field, court, and track. She was the Head Proctor in the dorms and a member of the TASIS Speaker Series, the TASIS Book Club, the Social Justice Club, and the Dante Club. In the Global Service Program and in Academic Travel, she was the person on whom faculty and fellow students relied. To imagine another student who contributed to this institution on so many fronts and with such focus and devotion would be understandably difficult.
Testaments to this student’s efforts, achievements, probity, and her mark on TASIS abound.
This student’s Global Service Program leader said, “She was always present and engaged, and with a true heart of gold; whether engaged in service-learning on the first TASIS GSP trip since the pandemic, organizing initiatives on campus with the Service Learning Board, or promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in our community, this student personifies the ‘goodness’ that lies at the heart of the TASIS mission.”
This athlete’s soccer and track coach said, “She is an incredible athlete, who as a two-time captain led the Varsity Girls Soccer team to a first-place finish at the NISSA Championship this year. She is a two-time recipient of the MVP award and is a determined, subtle, and charismatic leader. I have also had the opportunity to coach her on the Varsity Track team, where she has been dedicated to her fitness and athleticism and always shows up with a smile. She is such a positive spirit for all those around her, and we wish her the best for the future!”
Her basketball coach said, ”As the new coach, I was given a roster of girls who had signed up a week before practices began. I showed the roster to a fellow coach, who looked it over quickly and handed it back to me, saying 'You'll be fine...you've got her.’ He was right. She went on to lead the team in rebounding, passing, hustle, and the always-difficult category to define: whatever needs to be done. She excelled in that.”
The TASIS Speaker Series Chair and Dante Club coordinator said, “This student single-handedly brought in speakers to campus and made these visits true successes. In conversations with visiting speakers, she invariably posed questions that spawned new strands of thought and consideration. She brought the same level of curiosity and engagement to monthly meetings of the Dante Club, in which students read and discussed Dante’s Divine Comedy.”
Her advisor specifically lauded the maturity with which she handled disappointment, challenges, and opportunities throughout her three years at TASIS, adding, “She was also great in all of our group’s games of baseball, basketball, and four square!”
The Director of Residential Life said, “Having served as a proctor for nearly three years, this student was an outright leader in the group of proctors and in the school community. As Head Proctor, she set the example for the girls in her charge, always going above the call of duty.”
As if these accolades and contributions were not enough, this student also helped form a Medical Club at TASIS, allowing her students to further their interests in and knowledge of various fields of medicine. This club helps us understand what one faculty member said of this student: “She begins projects and always sees them through. Her fellow students follow her lead.”
In its DNA, TASIS is devoted to leadership, to courteous humility, to high ideals, to achievement in sports, and to academic excellence. Alejandra Cova embodies and perpetuates these fundamental elements and is utterly deserving of the 2022 H. Miller Crist Award.