She Speaks Speaker Series
You have to see it to be it
BILLIE JEAN KING
This famous quote by Billie Jean King has inspired many girls to see beyond the limitations of the stereotypes in our culture and follow their own path to achieve their goals. For the last few years, BHS has been inviting female speakers to talk to students as part of a special She Speaks Speaker Series, designed to show girls all the incredible ways that women contribute to society and all the ways that women today are breaking boundaries. We have welcomed a NASA astronaut and scientist, a female rugby referee, a pilot, women from the insurance and tech industries, entrepreneurs, activists, and women who work in the arts. As an added source of pride, the majority of these women have been BHS alumnae.
Dr. DeRosa is the Mibs Martin Follett Professor in Human Ecology at Cornell University and in 2021 was named as the first woman, and first person of colour, as Dean of Faculty. She received her B.A. in Biology-Psychology from Vassar College and then worked as a research assistant for a few years at Harvard University School of Medicine where she fell in love with research. She was trained in animal neuroscience and received her Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology from Harvard University and then received training in human neuroscience as a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University School of Medicine. In her talk with students, she spoke frequently about how the confidence she gained at BHS allowed her to always push the envelope, thinking outside the box, taking risks, “Do what is expected, but hold a space for something that is unexpected and maybe people will support you on that.” Another great piece of advice she shared was, “You don’t always know when you first start applying to university what you are going to be and do. Keep your path open….be open and observant about what you love and have passion for. If you don’t see the thing, then you create it for yourself.”
Canjelae Taylor '08 is currently a singer / songwriter who splits her time between Bermuda, LA and Paris and spoke to the students about her time at BHS and her career to date. She joined BHS in Year 10 and remembers a "sea of ponytails" on her first day! A shy student, she kept her singing talent hidden and didn't even take Music as a subject at school, saying she wanted to savour it as a hobby and not have it be "work". She shared that "Through all the shyness, people saw greatness and potential and I had to lean into that" and how songwriting helps her express herself and she even offers a songwriting masterclass, which a few of the students spoke to her about after assembly. She left the students with this advice, "I want you guys to believe in yourselves and be open. Whatever it is you want to do, I want you to go for it. You can do it and there's absolutely nothing standing in your way other than your own self-belief."
Carolita was born and raised in Bermuda. She came to BHS in Year 7. Carolita counts her time at BHS as one of the most formative periods in her life to date, where she developed her academic strengths, grew her confidence to become a well-rounded individual, and met lifelong best friends. At BHS, she was Head Girl and participated in a number of school sports.
Upon graduating BHS in May 2010, she went to the Pennsylvania State University, where she obtained bachelors degrees in Accounting and Public Relations, as well as a masters degree in Accounting. Currently, she lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and works at KPMG as a Senior Audit Manager. During her free time, she enjoys reading, going to Pilates, playing tennis, and grabbing brunch with friends.
Keisha was the first Black Head Girl at BHS and the first Black female Bermudian to serve as Head of Premier at HSBC. She hopes that these accomplishments inspire others to continue to believe in themselves, never give up and continue to push through glass ceilings.
She began her career after Acadia University as an Investment Broker's assistant and then as an Equity Trader, trading on the NY Stock Exchange and has been with HSBC for the past 15 years. Keisha is passionate about uplifting other women and helping members of her community to achieve their financial goals.
At home, Keisha enjoys a good Netflix binge, and can also be found spending quality time with her family, which include two boys who constantly keep her on her toes!