The last 12+ months have seen BMHS host an array of special events and special guests…even Santa Claus made an appearance on campus.
During the 2019-20 school year, alumni returned to the classrooms as guest speakers, and it has continued into the new academic year, albeit virtually. Last year, graduates from a variety of vocations visited classrooms to offer their expertise to students and provide them some tools they might need upon entering careers of their own. “It was wonderful having so many alumni back to speak to the students and provide guidance and inspiration,” says Andy Marafino, Director of Advancement. “Our alumni are special people and it is important for the current students to see them give back in this way. It is invaluable.” Already this year, alumni have joined Zoom classes and club meetings to offer their wisdom to Bishop’s students; and more are being scheduled all the time.
Charlie Imes ’79, a professional musician, spoke to music classes last November about his career as a performer and he even brought his guitar and played some songs for the students. Matthew Simmons ’10, an actor, businessman, and motivational speaker, spoke to freshmen religion classes last fall about his path from high school to today. Simmons was a sophomore at BMHS when his father, Randy, an LAPD SWAT officer, was killed in the line of duty. In October 2020, he joined the theater arts classes on Zoom to talk about his acting career. Aaron Dotson ’11 spoke to biology and anatomy & physiology classes about his goals of becoming a doctor. Crystal Elston ’11 spoke to the Sports Medicine and Exercise Science class about her career as an athletic trainer at Long Beach State and is slated to join the class on Zoom this semester as well. SÏonan Barrett ’12 is a former news reporter who now works at FoxSports. She spoke to the students in the Speech & Debate class to offer valuable tips on public speaking. Lauren Rogers ’12 is a social worker who specializing in child and family services. She visited freshmen classes and helped present a lesson on mental health. Renz Biscocho ’12, a police officer at Los Angeles International Airport, spoke to students about the importance of following your goals and dreams in life.
So far in 2020-21, alumni have joined a variety of club meetings and classes via Zoom to share their experiences and expertise with the students. TJ Tallie ’01 Ph.D., an Assistant Professor of African Studies at the University of San Diego, spoke to the students in Bishop’s Black Student Union in September. Trisha Bernardo-Perez ’03 is a children’s book author. In October, she joined the AP English classes and in November spoke to the students in the AP Seminar class. Brandon Bibbins ’09, a professional photographer, and Dan Stetson ’71, who served as the President & CEO of The Ocean Institute, joined the AP Seminar class in October, as well. Simmons ’10 spoke to the theater arts classes in October about his journey as an actor. He has been a frequent guest speaker over the years. More alumni are scheduled to visit Zoom classes in the coming weeks and months.
If you are interested in being a guest speaker, either in person or virtually, email us at email@example.com.
NEWS & NOTES
Dads UKnighted, a group for dads in the community who want to be the best fathers they can be, kicked off their activities in November with the first of their Speaker Series events. Craig Leach ’73, President & CEO of Torrance Memorial Medical Center spoke about balancing family and work.
On December 5, a new tradition was established when Bishop held its inaugural Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony. The front lawn of campus was the scene of a festive holiday atmosphere and the event was met with rave reviews. Open to the public, the event featured photos with Santa Claus (played by alumni parent Rob Blee), ornament decorating, music and carols by students in the BMHS music department, and plenty of holiday goodies and treats from the Athletic Booster, Mothers’, and Band Booster clubs. In addition to music by Bishop’s students, Nativity Catholic School’s K-2 string musicians performed a few Christmas carols for those gathered, adding to the community event.
Boys’ soccer alumni and coaches returned to campus for the Alumni Soccer Day in January. Over 50 alumni returned to take on the varsity team. Pictured are a few members of the 1982-83 CIF Champions: (l to r) Kevin Clarke ’86, Paul Guerreiro ’83, Coach Carlos Cooper, John Hallman ’83 and Luis Pasache ’83.
In January, the girls’ basketball team hosted their 2nd Annual Alumnae Knight at the Game (above). Prior to the girls’ basketball victory over Serra, alumnae from the 1980’s to the 2010’s enjoyed refreshments and met the varsity players and coaches and shared memories and advice for the current team. Thanks to all the alumnae who came back to campus to enjoy a “Knight at the Game.”
In February prior to the Alumni Baseball Game, BMHS retired the #15 jersey of Mike Zuanich ’04, who was inducted into the BMHS Athletic Hall of Fame in the Fall. Zuanich holds multiple batting records at BMHS and went on to a professional career in the Colorado Rockies system. Pictured (l to r) are Head Baseball Coach Eric Fuller ’94, Zuanich and his head coach at BMHS, Andy Marafino.
In February, BMHS hosted the Regional Admissions Counselors of California (RACC) college fair. Reps from over 30 out-of-state colleges and universities were on hand to speak with students.