Unbounded Opportunity Notes from Our Alumni (Vol. 2 – Jeff Besson)

Diane Moser is a longtime BASIS.ed employee who’s worn many hats for the network of schools. In fact, she has worn most of the hats – maybe even all of them!

Diane is currently Director of the Executive Department at BASIS.ed’s Scottsdale office. In her former role, Diane was Founding Head of School of BASIS Scottsdale – the second-ever BASIS.ed school, which opened in 2003. Indeed, “D-Mose” (as she was often called by students and colleagues) retains a rich connection with her former students, as well as alumni from other BASIS.ed institutions.

This is the second installment of “Unbounded Opportunity” — a continuing series in which Diane will catch up with our alumni.

Jeff Besson presenting a poster
Jeff Besson presenting a poster at the Protein Society Conference in Barcelona, Spain – July, 2015.

If you know a BASIS.ed alum whom you think we should profile, or you are an alum and want to catch up, please let us know – and feel free to email us at vectors@basised.com.

Jeff Besson began at BASIS Scottsdale as an 11th grader in 2007 – the year that the BASIS Scottsdale Upper School opened. He graduated in 2009.

DM: Howdy, Jeff! Thanks for communicating with us. So, what are you doing now?

Jeff Besson: I am currently a PhD candidate in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Harvard University. I got my BA in Chemistry from Goucher College in Baltimore, MD.

DM: Are you surprised by where you are today?

JB: Not really. My senior year at BASIS Scottsdale, I took Dr. Delannoy’s chemistry Capstone course, and I really enjoyed doing and presenting the research. By the time I started college, I was pretty much set on being a chemistry major. And the idea of graduate school has always been appealing to me.

DM: Did your education at BASIS Scottsdale help you reach this phase?

JB: Definitely. When I entered college, my AP credits let me skip a lot of the introductory classes — I actually entered with sophomore standing! I came into college with the basic writing, math, and science skills that professors expected of me, so I didn’t need to take any remedial classes to get up to speed. Being able to jump into higher level classes early in college made learning more fun and helped me find what I was passionate about.

DM: What’s next for you?

JB: I have several more years of graduate school before I earn my PhD. Then, I am interested in a job at a biotechnology company.

DM: When you chat with friends about high school at BASIS Scottsdale, what stories do you tell them? Who or what comes into your mind?

JB: My favorite teachers have definitely stuck with me. With such a small graduating class and low class sizes, we really got to know the teachers on a personal level. I also remember the excitement and growing pains of being the first graduating class at the new upper school — that ensured something interesting was always happening!

DM: Thanks for doing this, Jeff — and best of luck on your continued studies!

JB: I appreciate catching up, thank you!

Once again, if you know a BASIS.ed alum whom you think we should profile, or you are an alum and want to catch up, please feel free to email us at vectors@basised.com.

See you next time with a brand new alum!

Phil Handler

Phil Handler

Director of Communications, and Managing Editor, Vectors at BASIS.ed
Phil Handler grew up in Chicago, where he was a lawyer and also worked in politics, professional football, and newspaper, TV, and radio journalism. He also worked in San Francisco for eight years as a radio journalist and producer. Phil earned his BA via a double major in expository and fiction writing, and speech communication, as well as a JD in law, both from the University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign. Phil enjoys reading fiction, science and history, and coffee-sipping while dog-walking or movie-watching.
Phil Handler

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