By Adam Grabowski, staff writer
NOVEMBER 2022 — Alexis Bell is the Senior Apex instructor at Bio-Med Science Academy and has held this position since the 2021-2022 school year. Education has always been prevalent around Bell and is the reason that she’s where she is today.
Senior Apex is a class where seniors complete internships, independent studies, or research projects, and make goals related to their career pathway.
“Both of my parents were in education. My dad was a science teacher and then became a principal. My mom was a special education teacher, and so I grew up around [teaching] for a really long time,” Bell said. “I also had a really good teacher in high school as well. She taught me advanced history, and she did such a good job that I thought, ‘Hey, maybe I can do this one day.’”
Bell has been surrounded by people in the teaching career field, and that has helped mold her into the instructor she is today. Looking back, Bell thanks her parents and her high school history teacher for helping her get into education and teaching. Their backgrounds provided a lot of information and wisdom to her.
Bell grew up in Tallmadge, Ohio, and attended Kent State University (KSU) in 2013, because she believed it was a good school for a career in education. She earned an undergraduate degree in education with a specialization in integrated social studies in 2017.
Bell explained, “When you’re picking a college…, you have to make sure that it feels right. And when I went [to KSU], I immediately knew that this was the school for me.”
After graduating from college, Bell worked a number of different jobs, including as a tutor for Archbishop Hoban High School. The following year, Bell worked at Kenmore Garfield High School.
“The year of 2018-2019 was the year where half of [the year] was long-term substituting, and the other half was where I was helping seniors with graduation requirements,” Bell stated.
Bell then took another position as a long-term substitute teacher, where she taught sixth grade for a whole year as a substitute teacher. Bell sarcastically added that this was “very fun” when the pandemic started.
Bell’s final job before coming to Bio-Med was another tutoring job, this time at Kent State.
“Not that I didn’t like the tutoring job at Kent State, but I wasn’t that fulfilled. The people at Kent State didn’t need as much help, and they were mostly self-sufficient, so I was mostly there just making sure the computers worked, which is fine, but I actually want to go out and help out,” she commented.
Then, Bell found Bio-Med’s job description, and she was immediately intrigued.
“The program I was using for tutoring at Kent was also called Apex. I thought, ‘Well, maybe it’s a similar program,’ or that, ‘I’ll do something similar.’ Then I looked more into it, and I think, ‘Oh wait, this looks way more fun. This looks [like] I would be able to do a lot more. This looks great,’” she said.
She continued, “Then I applied and kept my fingers crossed, and I got lucky. [Stephanie Lammlein, Chief Administrative Officer and superintendent] called me, and here I am.”
Bell described the most fun part of her job as visiting all of the internship sites that the seniors go to and getting to meet many different people. She loves being in person with the kids and viewing them do real work and seeing seniors get ready to become adults.
One of the things that Bell enjoys the most about Bio-Med is the staff who work here. She says she knows that the staff at Bio-Med are kind-hearted and passionate people.
One thing that Bell stated that she explicitly enjoys about Bio-Med is that “We have a slide.”
Outside of school, Bell greatly enjoys baking as her number one hobby.
She elaborated, “I’ve made weird stuff…. You can see weird recipes online and wonder if it’s any good. I made a tomato soup cake once, and it was actually pretty good… It didn’t taste tomato-ey though. It tasted closer to chocolate, which was really confusing.”
Bell started baking because of the pandemic keeping her home, and she enjoys making things for other people.
Another hobby that Bell enjoys is historical costuming, which she hopes to do more of when she moves into a home with more room. She plays role-playing video games.
Bell also has some siblings. She has two half sisters, one step sister, and one step brother.
Bell spent most of her early adulthood focused on getting a job and a place to live. She is proud of herself for finding both things. She’s happy with how far she’s come and where she is now, but Bell will always try to better herself.
Bell see’s herself 10 years from now continuing to help students, and she’s looking forward to getting her master’s degree, though she isn’t sure what she wants to study. She is also anticipating possibly owning a house.
Bell is also looking forward to the fun she’ll have in her career and getting to know more about her colleagues. She enjoys helping students find their way in life and is grateful for all of the people that have helped her throughout her life to get where she is now.