Senior Spotlight: Kayla

Why did you choose/decide to go to Bennett Day School?

Before coming to Bennett, I was a very shy person, and felt intimidated to participate in class. Bennett’s project-based learning (PBL) approach intrigued me and I decided to take a chance with this type of program. Since beginning my journey at Bennett, being able to shape my own learning has allowed me to explore ideas and concepts I was always interested in, but never taught. Being in a smaller class setting, I have built strong bonds with all my teachers and have been given a safe space to participate and express my ideas. Bennett has prepared me to become a strong, compassionate, and independent leader in the world. 

Senior Spotlight Kayla

What are your plans after you graduate?

I will attend the University of Southern California to study civil engineering and business. I hope to become a project engineer manager and carry my passion for social justice into engineering by becoming my own general contractor and creating facilities for BIPOC communities around Chicago. 

What advice would you give rising seniors?

Senior year will be stressful, 100%, but make sure you acknowledge all the accomplishments you’ve had leading up to your senior year. Be proud of how far you’ve come to be successful up to this point. Allow yourself to make mistakes, that’s the only way you will grow as a person. 

45153D38-9AF2-4D4E-9F9E-108860FF9E9B - Kayla Magdaleno

What’s your favorite project-based learning (PBL) memory?

Although all PBL projects and Demo Nights have had such a big impact on me, my favorite Demo Night would have to be our first Demo Night freshman year, the Shape of Chicago unit. This experience allowed me to understand different aspects of our city such as the policies and laws, the mesmerizing architecture, the nature of Chicago, etc. I had the opportunity to explore different parts of Chicago, build stronger friendships with my peers, and overcome my fear of public speaking. In just the first 12 weeks of my freshman year, I grew into a more confident student. 

What are you excited for after Bennett?

I am excited to start this new chapter of my life. I am eager to accomplish so many exciting things these next few years. This summer, I earned a paid internship with W. E. O’Neil Construction as a Project Engineer Intern. I am also so excited that I am finally going to be living my California dream of being in a warm climate all year round, getting the opportunity to explore Los Angeles, and possibly studying abroad 🙂 

AC34D8AA-01AB-4A13-8E52-84F6D7D4A630 - Kayla Magdaleno

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