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New Bedford High School students present their school to area middle school students.

Promoting New Bedford High School, student to student


New Bedford High School is ramping up its enrollment efforts for next year’s incoming freshmen class with students making the pitch to area middle schoolers to consider joining the Whalers. More than 500 Normandin and Ford Middle School students visited NBHS today to learn directly from NBHS students about all that their school has to offer, including a comprehensive course catalog and the widest range of academic, athletic, performing arts, and extracurricular programs in the region.

The presentation ‘by students for students’ took place in the fully renovated Bronspiegel Auditorium. Juniors and seniors took their turns at the podium to pitch their school’s attributes, utilizing video, PowerPoint presentations, musical performances and special demos.

The 90-minute presentation focused on NBHS’ comprehensive academic and athletic offerings, including its five Academies – Engineering, Finance, Health Sciences, Information & Technology, and Tourism & Hospitality. Affiliated with the National Academy Foundation, the academies follow a proven NAF educational model which includes industry-focused curricula, work-based learning experiences, and business partner expertise.

In addition to the five NAF academies, visiting students learned about the Academy of Honors, which provides scholars the opportunity to participate in a sequence of advanced courses that readies them for the finest undergraduate institutes and most competitive programs. AOH members also take AP Seminar and AP Research as part of the coveted AP Capstone Diploma program, which signifies outstanding academic achievement and attainment of college-level academic and research skills.

Students presented an overview of NBHS’ 20 Advanced Placement (AP) course offerings, which includes Biology, Calculus, Chemistry, Computer Science, Environmental Science, European History, Government & Politics, Human Geography, Language & Composition, Literature & Composition, Music Theory, Physics, Research, Seminar, Spanish, Statistics, Studio Art, and US History.

The event had a pep rally atmosphere as team captains spoke about the school’s Division 1 sports and the extensive offering of 45 athletic programs, including Baseball, Basketball, Cheerleading, Cross Country, Field Hockey, Football, Golf, Soccer, Hockey, Lacrosse, Softball, Swimming & Diving, Tennis, Track, Volleyball, and Wrestling. The student athletics praised their school’s new $400,000 Bobby Watkins Fitness Center, the most comprehensive facility of its kind at any high school in the region. They also noted that eighth-graders are eligible to participate in several sports including Cross Country, Field Hockey, Golf, Swimming, Baseball and Spring Track.

Headmaster Bernadette Coelho addressed the assembly, noting “you’re here today because you have an important decision to make… you want to get all of the information and know what the best fit is for you… we’re proud of what we do at New Bedford High School and what you’re learning about it today.”

In thanking the students who presented and those who attended, Ms. Coelho recognized “our very talented musicians, cheerleaders, JROTC, artists and academy members who spoke or performed today,” and advised middle school students to “talk to your guidance counselors, talk to your teachers, and we hope to see you here next year as the New Bedford High School Class of 2024.”

Students from all three New Bedford middle schools – Keith, Normandin and Roosevelt – are participating in NBHS’ introductory presentations during the month of October. All seventh and eighth-grade students and their families from New Bedford and Acushnet are invited to NBHS’ Annual Open House for middle schoolers on Thursday, November 14, 5:30-7:30 p.m. New Bedford High School is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

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