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November 4, 2014

The College Application Essay Workshop

As the school year begins for B-CC seniors, there is much to look forward to: They’ve survived junior year, with its heavy course load, its endless SAT/ACT practice, and, perhaps most trying of all, its tendency to provoke parental freakouts.

So much is behind these 17- and 18-year-olds (well, maybe not the freakouts), but there’s one final hurdle on their path to the future: the college application, and, most angst-producing of all, the application essay. For many students (and …

As the school year begins for B-CC seniors, there is much to look forward to: They’ve survived junior year, with its heavy course load, its endless SAT/ACT practice, and, perhaps most trying of all, its tendency to provoke parental freakouts.

So much is behind these 17- and 18-year-olds (well, maybe not the freakouts), but there’s one final hurdle on their path to the future: the college application, and, most angst-producing of all, the application essay. For many students (and their nearby relatives), the experience of producing those 500 words casts a long shadow over the fall of their final year of high school.

But for Madeline Linder and 54 other B-CC seniors, these past couple of months were significantly less fraught, thanks to the B-CC High School Educational Foundation’s College Application Essay Workshop.

According to Madeline, the workshop, which was taught last summer by Sarah Mahoney and Claudia Frank, two of B-CC’s very own English teachers, “was definitely so helpful. It’s hard motivating yourself after junior year, but it gave me time to come up with an idea, time to write it, and feedback from the teachers, which was great.

Her mom, Penelope Bell, couldn’t agree more: “She started the school year with a completed essay, removing a major source of stress during the college application process. Best of all, she wrote the essay in four workshop sessions, without us having to nag her into doing it.

The workshop, part of the Foundation’s expanded summer offerings, ran in two sessions, from July 8-11, and from August 12-15. Designed for students needing extra support, the program is open to all rising seniors. “We couldn’t believe the response we got,” says Sarah Mahoney. “We had a waiting list of about 30 kids. We were amazed so many kids were willing to give up 10 hours of their summer, but they were. And it really paid off: Each kid got about 20 minutes of one-on-one time with us each day.

Another plus, she added, is that she and Ms. Frank “have known a lot of these kids for a couple of years. The kids are comfortable with us, and feel comfortable challenging us. In the back-and-forth, the essay really becomes something that is theirs, and it says something about them, which is the ultimate goal. They’re proud of it.

In order to continue to underwrite this workshop, the Foundation needs your help. The college application essay is just one component in our Campaign for Academic Excellence, which comprises a mix of our traditional programs plus some exciting new initiatives, and provides a continuum of year-round support for our students.

Donate today and  help us help all the students at B-CC!

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October 31, 2014

Skip the Tutor, Support TAP!

In 10th grade, Shaina Adler, now a senior at B-CC, had met the enemy, and its name was chemistry.

“It was just a really hard class,” she recalls. “Everyone was struggling. My teacher, Ms. Lin, encouraged me to get extra help by going to TAP after school.” Shaina says she’d go twice a week, and usually had Ms. Lin herself helping her. “Just sitting down with the teacher was so helpful. And she was the one who was …

49In 10th grade, Shaina Adler, now a senior at B-CC, had met the enemy, and its name was chemistry.

It was just a really hard class,” she recalls. “Everyone was struggling. My teacher, Ms. Lin, encouraged me to get extra help by going to TAP after school.” Shaina says she’d go twice a week, and usually had Ms. Lin herself helping her. “Just sitting down with the teacher was so helpful. And she was the one who was making up and grading the quizzes, so it couldn’t have been better…Honestly, I think the only reason I got a good grade in that class was because of TAP.

Shaina’s experience exemplifies the impact that TAP (Time for Academic Progress), a Foundation-funded afterschool academic support program, has had on many students at B-CC. More than 50% of the student body has gone to TAP, and there were over 1200 visits to the program in the 2013-2014 school year. Fully funded by donations to the Foundation since 2003, TAP addresses the needs of all students in all grades, in everything from on-level courses to advanced classes, in math, science, English, and Social Studies.

This year, in an effort to reach even more students, TAP has been revamped, based on recommendations from the teachers: It’s now centralized in the cafeteria (rather than spread out in different classrooms), so students can get help with several subjects if they need it, and to create a sort of “student union” feel. Football coaches have moved the team study hall to the cafeteria, allowing players to get the academic assistance they need in specific subjects.

The students now have better access to the Cyber Café, a computer center created with funding from the Foundation. Another innovation has been the creation of a “TAP folder,” which allows students who want comments on a paper to save their drafts online during the day. TAP English teachers comment on the drafts electronically, so students can get help without needing to be physically present. The cafeteria has also chipped in by providing snacks. Six to seven teachers are there every day, with a total of twelve staffing the program.

The changes are working. Attendance has risen significantly and students are not only getting help in multiple subjects but they are getting help from multiple sources. “The atmosphere is vibrant and the numbers [of students] are increasing,” says Stacy Farrar, the program coordinator.  

In order to continue to underwrite TAP, the Foundation needs your help. TAP is one of the Foundation’s most well-known programs, but it is just one component in our Campaign for Academic Excellence. The Campaign comprises a mix of our traditional programs plus some exciting new initiatives, and provides a continuum of year-round support for our students. 

Donate now and help us help ALL the students at B-CC!

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October 23, 2014

Nobel Prize Winners Wow B-CC Audience

A big thank you to B-CC Senior James Becker, President of the Scandinavian Club, for hosting an incredible evening with two Nobel Prize winners! 250 people came to be inspired by Dr. Thomas Schelling (2005, Economics) and Dr. William Phillips (1997, Physics) and support the Foundation. Highlights from the event are available in this video, courtesy of MCPS. …

A big thank you to B-CC Senior James Becker, President of the Scandinavian Club, for hosting an incredible evening with two Nobel Prize winners! 250 people came to be inspired by Dr. Thomas Schelling (2005, Economics) and Dr. William Phillips (1997, Physics) and support the Foundation. Highlights from the event are available in this video, courtesy of MCPS.

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October 14, 2014

B-CC High School’s Scandinavian Club Presents A Conversation with Two Nobel Prize Winners

October 22, 2014
B-CC High School Auditorium
4301 East-West Highway, Bethesda, MD
7pm – 9pm

Join us for an evening with two Nobel Laureates who will share their life stories with students to inspire and encourage an interest in the sciences and related fields.

Dr. Thomas C. Schelling – 2005 Nobel Prize in Economics for his work in understanding conflict, negotiation and cooperation through game-theory analysis. Often  referred to as the “Father of Game Theory,” Schelling served …

October 22, 2014
B-CC High School Auditorium
4301 East-West Highway, Bethesda, MD
7pm – 9pm

Join us for an evening with two Nobel Laureates who will share their life stories with students to inspire and encourage an interest in the sciences and related fields.

Dr. Thomas C. Schelling – 2005 Nobel Prize in Economics for his work in understanding conflict, negotiation and cooperation through game-theory analysis. Often  referred to as the “Father of Game Theory,” Schelling served in the Truman, Eisenhower,  and Kennedy Administrations, and later became one of the founders of the Kennedy School at Harvard University.

Dr. William Phillips – 1997 Nobel Prize in Physics along with two colleagues, for development of methods to cool and trap atoms with laser light, a technique used to slow the movement of gaseous atoms in order to better study them. Dr. Phillips works at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg.

Students free of charge, $5 entrance fee for adults

Proceeds will benefit the BCC High School Educational Foundation.

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September 9, 2014

Don’t Forget to Shop AmazonSmiles-and Designate the Foundation!


Did you know that Amazon donates .5% of the price of eligible AmazonSmile purchases to the charitable organizations selected by customers? Please help us support critical programs at B-CC High School by designating the B-CC High School Educational Foundation when you shop! It’s easy to do: just click here! …

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Did you know that Amazon donates .5% of the price of eligible AmazonSmile purchases to the charitable organizations selected by customers? Please help us support critical programs at B-CC High School by designating the B-CC High School Educational Foundation when you shop! It’s easy to do: just click here!

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Campaign for Academic Excellence

The Foundation’s Campaign for Academic Excellence provides a continuum of year-round integrated academic support and enrichment programs that promote high academic standards and success for all students at B-CC High School.



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Partnership with B-CC High School Since 1995

The Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School Educational Foundation was established in 1995 during a time of declining enrollment and deteriorating facilities at B-CC High School. The Foundation took on the charge to help improve school facilities, raise academic rigor, and re-engineer B-CC for the 21st Century

The Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School Educational Foundation was established in 1995 during a time of declining enrollment and deteriorating facilities at B-CC High School. The Foundation took on the charge to help improve school facilities, raise academic rigor, and re-engineer B-CC for the 21st Century.

Foundation Net Revenue 1996-2016 By the summer of 2016, the Foundation has raised more than two and a half million dollars to meet that challenge and to invest in academic excellence at B-CC High School. With new programs and a newly modernized facility that was completed in February 2002, B-CC’s enrollment, reflecting community confidence in the school, has been increasing steadily ever since.

The generosity of alumni, parents, faculty, students, businesses, and community members has made it possible for the Foundation to fund innovative academic support programs that promote high academic standards and support success for all B-CC students. In the process, the Foundation helped bring several “firsts” to B-CC High School:

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