Class of 2017 Presents Senior Projects Ross School’s Class of 2017 presented their Senior Projects to the public over three nights the week of January 20.

Senior Projects represent the culmination of a student’s learning experience at Ross School, and through their execution, students embody their passions in a process and product that integrates such Ross School principles as multiple intelligences, cultural and historical context, personal reflection, application of technology, and pursuit of excellence. At the conclusion of the Senior Project, students have deeper insight into themselves as learners and producers.


Senior Projects Performance Night, the first of three events, included a cultural study of belly dance from Brazilian student Gabriela do Nascimento. Gabriela was an avid ballet dancer until an injury made it impossible for her to continue down that path. Practicing belly dance, she said, brought her back to life after such a devastating loss. Her project, which included a dance she choreographed, an oral presentation, and journal entries, explored the history of belly dance and its spread across the globe.

Next, Sam Grossman played music for the crowd using the tube-powered guitar amp he built as part of his project. In striving to build a unique-looking and -sounding piece, Sam built the enclosure of his amp from the reclaimed floorboards of a 19th century barn and hand-wired its circuit board.


During Exhibition Night, student presentations were on display throughout the Senior Thesis Building and in the Ross Gallery.

Environmental enthusiast Jonas Linnman-Feuerring drew from both the Visual Arts and Science domains to produce a model of a sustainable town inspired by Sag Harbor. By incorporating the use of renewable energy from wind turbines, solar power, and geothermal heating, he was able to craft a system that would offset the amount of energy Sag Harbor currently uses. In addition to reproducing a section of the town’s commercial district, Jonas designed two homes: one representing the ways that existing homes could be retrofitted to be more environmentally friendly and the other—his own custom design—showing the optimal choices to build a home that has no carbon footprint. Jonas is hoping to share his project with the Sag Harbor Board of Trustees to find out whether the town would be interested in pursuing any of his suggestions.


“Even though it may be expensive up front, it’s worth it to invest in the future,” Jonas said. “Sag Harbor could be underwater in a century if we don’t change our ways.”

In another project focused on sustainability, Hannah Dayton worked with Innovation Lab @Ross mentor Paul Gansky to found an environmentally friendly mobile food business selling Brazilian açai bowls for her Senior Project, combining principles from the Mathematics and Media Studies and Technology domains. Throughout the course of the project, she participated in local events like the Hampton Classic, Harborfest, and Septemberfest.


On Film Night, viewers gathered in the Senior Building Lecture Hall to enjoy student-made films, which included a range of styles like documentary, animation, and horror. In one film, Alex Lawson combined his two passions, surfing and filmmaking, to craft a

a documentary about people who surf on Long Island during winter—a topic that has fascinated him since he began practicing the sport.

For her film, Sherry Gao combined the Visual Arts, Cultural History, and Media Studies and Technology domains to lend a unique perspective into the mind of a character living with dissociative identity disorder (DID). Sherry’s character was modeled after Sybil Dorsett, the main character of the 1976 movie starring Sally Field. Sherry’s hope is that her illustration of life with alternate identities ultimately raises awareness of the condition and compassion for those living with it.


“Senior Projects are one of students’ most valuable experiences at Ross,” said Dale Scott, dean of Senior Projects. “They are given complete freedom to explore their passions and test the boundaries of their classroom learning, and every year they rise to the challenge in ways we could not anticipate.”

Senior Projects will be on display at Ross Upper School through Monday, February 27.

More about students’ work toward mastering this integral component of a Ross education can be found in past blogs about Ashley Ramos-Cajas, Rory Gallaher, Jared Goldsmith, Seamus McCarthy, Amanda Mintz, and Isabelle Rowe. Look for even more seniors to be featured in the blog through the end of the trimester.

Senior Project Performance Night Flickr Gallery Senior Project Exhibition Night Flickr Gallery