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World Mag > WM Winter 2013 edition > Fred Bournas Interview

Fred Bournas Interview

Fred Bournas was a teacher at AISB
Fred Bournas and Family
Fred Bournas and Family

WM: What do you do now? Where do you live (and for how long)? 

FB: After leaving AISB in 2003, I moved back to Canada and spent a few years teaching at Sterling Hall School, Toronto, and Appleby College, Oakville, Ontario. I was then seized by the urge to travel, having spent far too long in the same place (4 years), and honestly being a little bit tired of the long and cold Canadian winter. I was o ered the position of MYP coordinator at Lyford Cay International School in The Bahamas and decided to move to this beautiful archipelago of islands (more than 700 islands), “A place where you can’t tell where dreams begin and reality ends”, as you can read on the large advertisement poster when arriving at the airport.

The dream came true for me with the birth of my daughter, Issa (4 years), and my son, Mathis (18 months). They are both citizens of the world with French/Bahamian/Jamaican roots. They can also claim a Canadian Passport ...

I started in 2007 as the Information Technology/MYP coordinator then moved to Head of Secondary the fol- lowing year. I am currently the Vice-Principal at the school but still nd the time to enjoy coaching football and volun- teering for community service projects.

In addition I pursue my two passions, Music and Football. I am playing for and manag- ing two Football Teams, the Lyford Cay FC Dragons and Warriors, both competing in the rst division in The Baha- mas and I am DJing for some special events but keep this a secret... only my very good friends are aware of this (DJ Issou). 

WM: What are your best things/memories at AISB?

FB: The four years I spent in Romania and at AISB are full of good memories! Just having to be at AISB is a good memory. It is very di cult to isolate a few individuals or moments. I simply loved the people there, my students, my colleagues and the parents. Thank you, Facebook, for keeping us connected...

If I have to be selective in my memories, I will mention all the trips with the Girls’ Varsity Football Teams (Warsaw, Prague) led by Cristina and Nassima, the MUN Team in Istanbul with Giorgiana and Co, and the Cross Country Team (Latvia, Russia) with great runners such as Stefan Popescu. I will always remember traveling with the team and Mrs. DiFronzo to Moscow and going back with one of my athletes because her visa was not valid anymore. Bucharest-Warsaw-Bucharest-Warsaw-Moscow in less than 18 hours.

What I enjoy the most about AISB? The connection with the students and simply being in the classroom with them, teaching them African and Asian history, challenging their critical thinking and ensuring that they always kept “la joie de vivre et d’apprendre”. I also loved all the musical performances especially the Steel drums. Being in the Caribbean, I still have the pleasure to listen to the students playing this wonderful instrument.

I had the chance to see some of my students in di erent locations around the world: Lara Globe-Trotter in New York (still waiting for you to come visit us in Nassau - only destination you did not reach in the past two years); Nassima recently in Nassau when she was doing some research for the US government. I also had two former students from AISB who graduated in the past two years from my current school: Emily Lupu and Nicholas Mindor . The world is such a small place ...

Thinking about students, I have to mention Ruxi who made a bet with me that I will fail to contact her after leaving Bucharest. I won - thanks to Facebook again - and I will be coming to London in January for the CIS job recruitment to claim my prize, an invitation to one of the top restaurants in London. So be ready to take me out in January, Ruxi.

I cannot forget my adopted son for a period of six months or, more exactly, my adopted brother, Christopher Gellenbeck. A lot of good memories with this a cionado of good movies and great music (we have the same good taste despite what Mr. Nicholson thinks). I am waiting for him to be tired of the long winters in Philadelphia to come to visit me with his family.

I continue to follow the beautiful and successful stories of my friends and former students and I am very proud of all of them: Roberto, Caitlin, The Bouri Family, Simona, Maggi, Maria, Cristina, Jarret and his career in MMA, Lara, Miruna, James, Victorita, Efrat, Giorgi, George, Adam, Lital, Andrei, Victor, Ola, Iolanda, Monica, Richard, Daniel, Heimari, Pawel and many more. Hope to see you when I pass by your town...
What else made my experience so special if not my students? my colleagues. I was lucky to start my teaching career with such a dedicated, interesting and highly quali ed group of educators and great administrators like Fred Wesson and Chris Muller, both really inspiring and caring leaders. Special mention a mon ami, Monsieur Emanuel, and the other footballer with the bung knee, Mr. Nicholson (his knee was actually worse than mine and he had to give up football to start a golf career at age 35 - not good for a Liverpool fan). Best moment of the week: not TGIF like all teachers around the world, but Monday night with the faculty and community members for our football game, including some national football stars like Hagi... What a special treat for all football fans to play a few hours with some of the most talented players in the world like Hagi. I will always remember the competitive rivalry against Emanuel, Max, and Andrei V and the nice dinner after the game at PiccoloMondo or the great pizza place just outside of Bucharest.

As with my students, I had the opportunity to see some of my colleagues around the world (John in Nice, Andrew in Miami, Chris every year in London ...) and to work with some of them in The Bahamas: Amy Lupu, David and Michele Mindor .

WM: What do you like most about your life (both work and life style)?

FB: Successfully balancing a very demanding job and family time and hobbies: After 8-10 hours of hard work, being able
to enjoy a beautiful beach and swim with the kids, even in December, is priceless; Traveling around the world and working in an IB environment are also things I cherish.

WM: Message to AISB/Alumni

FB: I feel very blessed to have been part of such an amazing school and community and I would like to thank Maria Tudor, Lynn and Jane Wells and the Alumni volunteers for all their hard work. I look forward to many more opportunities to connect with all of you in the coming years.

WM: What is your plan for the Holidays? Where and why?

FB: Enjoying The Bahamas during the Christmas season, taking Issa to Ski in February, and going to Brazil in June for the World Cup. Romania is next after Brazil so see you soon... 

Reas the entire WORLD Magazine Winter 2013 edition here.


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