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Student News

O’Dowd Thanks Top Supporters

Nearly 125 supporters of Bishop O’Dowd High School gathered for a reception held in the LEED-platinum certified Center for Environmental Studies (CES) on Aug. 23 to celebrate the school’s impressive accomplishments made possibly by philanthropy.

As the event attendees, including current and past parents and alumni, mingled with one another they enjoyed tasty gourmet pizza, freshly baked in the new wood fire pizza oven located on the CES plaza, and an assortment of passed hors d’oeuvres and drinks. Read more…

Evin Yang ’16 Achieves Perfection

Most students would be ecstatic to learn that they earned a 2280 on the SAT. Not Evin Yang ’16.

After achieving the more than respectable score on the SAT last November, Evin opted to take the standardized college admissions test a second time in June. “I felt that there was room for me to improve in the writing section, and my practice test scores for math and reading were very consistent so I didn’t expect to lose ground there,” he said.

In fact, Evin gained ground, scoring a perfect 2400 on his second test attempt. Read more…

Rita F. Pierson: Every kid needs a champion

Rita Pierson, a teacher for 40 years, once heard a colleague say, “They don’t pay me to like the kids.” Her response: “Kids don’t learn from people they don’t like.’” A rousing call to educators to believe in their students and actually connect with them on a real, human, personal level.

This talk was presented at an official TED conference, and was featured by our editors on the home page.

Watch it on TED website »

TED: Matthieu Ricard: How to let altruism be your guide

What is altruism? Put simply, it’s the wish that other people may be happy. And, says Matthieu Ricard, a happiness researcher and a Buddhist monk, altruism is also a great lens for making decisions, both for the short and long term, in work and in life.

Watch more videos on our YouTube channel »

Mylan Gerbeyesus ’13 is Barbara Lee’s New Intern

Father Sullivan joins BOD as religion teacher, chaplain

When students converge on Bishop O’Dowd High School Aug. 21 for the first day of classes, there will be a new chaplain in town; Father Jim Sullivan.

Father Sullivan is fresh off the 6,000-family parish of Immaculate Heart of Mary in Brentwood. Now he has 1,200 young charges and a faculty and staff of more than 100.

He’ll celebrate Mass daily at 7:45 a.m., before the first classes, but not before the busy campus is already alive with athletes, musicians and scholars getting a jump on the day.

“What I look forward to,” he said, “being with teenagers. I was a youth minister for years, even before I became a seminarian.”

“There’s something about their enthusiasm, their boundless energy,” he said. “There’s something about those years.” Read more…

Fall Play Announced

Godspell will be the 2015 fall production presented by the BOD theater department. Godspell is a musical composed by Stephen Schwartz with a book by John-Michael Tebelak. It opened off Broadway on May 17, 1971, and has played in various touring companies and revivals many times since, including a 2011 Broadway revival. Several cast albums have been released over the years and one of its songs, “Day by Day” from the original cast album, reached #13 on the Billboard pop singles chart in the summer of 1972.

The structure of the light-rock musical is that of a series of parables, mostly based on the Gospel of Matthew. The parables are interspersed with a variety of modern music set primarily to lyrics from traditional hymns, with the passion of Christ treated briefly near the end of the performance. It started as a college project performed by students at Carnegie Mellon University and moved to La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club in Greenwich Village. It was then re-scored for an off-Broadway production, which became a long-running success.

Performance dates for Godspell are November 13, 14, 15, 20, 21, 22, including two Sunday matinees.

Auditions for Godspell will take place Monday, August 24 at 3:30, and Tuesday, August 25 at 2:00 in the theater. For further information, contact Mr. Kohles at

A Warm Welcome to Our New International Students

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TED Talks


Rita Pierson: Every kid needs a champion

Rita Pierson, a teacher for 40 years, once heard a colleague say, "They don't pay me to like the kids." Her response: "Kids don't learn from people they don't like.'" A rousing call to educators to believe in their students and actually connect with them on a real, human, personal level.

View our TED archive »

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