Bessetti: The Man Behind the Myth

Biology teacher Brad Bessetti demonstrates his love of the outdoors and all things related to biology in a recent fishing trip to Grand Isle. (photo courtesy Brad Bessetti)

(COVINGTON, La.) — This school year has brought on many new teachers, and with that, many new personalities.  One teacher in particular has been quite the topic of conversation among St. Paul’s students.

“Mr. (Brad) Bessetti, in these first 3 weeks or so, has been the hardest teacher I’ve ever had,” sophomore William James said about the school’s newest biology teacher. “Keeping up with his fast paced class has been quite a struggle.”

James and a handful of other students share this opinion, but Bessetti does not.

“If a student focuses on listening and being an active learner, he should be fine,” Bessetti said. “Learning isn’t always easy. Sometimes you have to adapt and try new ways to learn from a new teacher or a new class. You will never reach your full potential without having to persevere over some adversity.”

An active learner, himself, Bessetti has taken a myriad of courses over the years in his free time.

“I take one or two graduate classes per year through Mississippi State,” Bessetti said. “I am currently taking a microbiology class.”

This, he says, will enhance his ability to teach subjects with which he already has much experience.  Bessetti has taught at two schools, the first being a public school in Colorado where he taught for a year, and the second being St. Scholastica Academy, SPS’s sister school located blocks away from his new campus. He taught at SSA for 10 years, where he had a reputation for being a challenging teacher in his quest to prepare students for the college classroom.

“I love teaching,” Bessetti said. “One of the greatest rewards in teaching is seeing a student exceed his or her expectations. I also enjoy the stories I hear a year or two after graduating about how their high school science classes gave them a foundation to succeed at the next level.”

Through these 11 years of teaching, Biology was a constant for Bessetti.

“When I was a kid, I spent a lot of time outside catching insects, riding my bike to farm ponds to fish, bowhunting, among other things,” Bessetti said. “Everything outside was interesting. Not much has changed; I still enjoy gardening, raising chickens, fishing, and hunting. It all relates to biology.”

Bessetti has made it clear that his class will be challenging, but if students can learn to focus and take comprehensive notes in his class, “they will be fine,” he said.