Once a tiger, always a tiger! Alumna Sarah Beshir ’10 (fourth from the left), a systems engineer in the aerospace industry who leads teams creating satellite system architecture models and founded a social & racial justice working group focused on improving employee recruitment, retention, education, and communication, returned to campus Friday to visit with students in advance of receiving the Westridge Distinguished Young Alumna Award at Saturday’s 2023 Alumnae Luncheon.

Sarah joined Middle and Upper School students in the Performing Arts Center for a Q&A led by Ilena M. ’24, editor-in-chief of Spyglass. She talked to students about her career and aspirations, gave advice, and answered questions about her time at Westridge. While discussing her professional life she stressed the importance of building community, and shared how important it is to find mentors in your professional life who will be your champion.

Before the assembly, Sarah led Westridge affinity groups in a lunchtime discussion. She asked students about the work being done in affinity groups at Westridge, the events they host, their involvement in the community, and how they collaborate with other affinities. 

When Sarah asked the group “How do you see the goals of these affinity groups line up with your life ambitions?” students produced thoughtful responses. Lauren K. ’24 spoke up to share aspirations of becoming a civil rights attorney. “I feel like a way to advocate for other people is to help them find a voice,” she shared with the group. When discussing things they liked about their affinity groups, Micaela R. '26 said, “being in BSU has opened my eyes to a community I haven’t been a part of my whole life. It’s nice to get to know each other and hear experience of being black at Westridge.”

What is the Distinguished Young Alumna Award? The Westridge Distinguished Young Alumna Award was established in 2020 to honor each year a young alumna who has made a meaningful impact in her community and notable strides in her chosen field. The citation for the award reads, "This award is given annually by Westridge School to a young alumna who exhibits excellence, leadership, and agency during her educational and career path, and who continues to serve as a role model and inspiration for Westridge students."