ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: Passion for math taking Harris to highest of levels


Emily Hulce, BHS Journalism

Cael Harris is a BHS alumnus who graduated in 2018. He is currently finishing as an undergrad at University of Kansas and after he graduates he will be trying to earn his Ph.D. He is currently applying to graduate programs across the U.S. BHS was an experience that helped him get to where he is. 

“I think my dad has always said and I get the feeling that other teachers have the same attitude where its high school is just for you to learn how to be organized how to be responsible right not really go that deep in subject material and that’s how I kind of felt my of my passion for what I want to study did not come directly from the content of my classes I’ll be honest,” he said. “Everything I want to study now was my own discovery. It was the people that I interacted with mostly that developed me.” 

He thought the teachers who he interacted with the most were the ones who really helped develop his interests. 

“My favorite teachers didn’t have to be the science or math teachers just because I’m going into math and science,” he said. “Ashcraft, obviously the teacher I was fairly chummy with, Ms. Marten, we always talked about movies and stuff. Crenshaw was like my favorite teacher I ever had and I love talking to him. He had this kind of wisdom about him. Talking to teachers about anything you’re interested in learning how to be an adult. That’s what I mostly got out of Baldwin. It was easy because it’s a small school and everyone is fairly close and familiar with each other . There’s enough room for the quirky weird kid, not to typify myself, but you know outside of the box kind of kids to find that niche. Film Society was something I kind of did and Chess Club.”

While getting his degree he has to think of what to major in.

“Math, I can be more specific but sometimes when I do that I start to lose people,” Harris said. “Not to say that people are dumn, but it’s a highly specialized thing and there’s a weird stigma around math students ‘like oh you must be a genius’ and I really don’t think of my self as a genius but more of a creative person that’s in to weird stuff that not a lot of stuff that people are into. Math, mathematical physics, geometry, Einstein  general relativity kind of stuff is vaguely the area I kind of like.”

Since being undecided on where he’s going, he has a few in mind. 

“I don’t know yet I’m still trying to fill out applications, I don’t know if I’m going to get in, I mean odds are I’m the kind of person to not think of myself,” he said. “I’m hard on myself. So I’m always thinking of ‘ah who’s going to take me’ you know but my main choice is University of Michigan right now. There’s so much to do you know there’s so much to send and test scores. I have to write letters of purpose and I always don’t know how to talk about myself. It’s weird talking about myself to other people like ‘I’m good look how good I am.’ It’s always a weird thing for me. But the University of Michigan is my top choice. I’m probably going to do that as a sort of backup. Maybe the KU course they say you shouldn’t go to the same place as undergrad. I don’t know how to expand yourself, but K-State will probably be a backup school for me. Stoney Brook University in New York is another one people have recommended and I’ve kind of looked at it and it has a good program for the sort of stuff that I’m interested in. Those are the big three right now on my radar for right now.” 

His favorite memory came to mind. Harris dove into some of the things he enjoyed doing the most. 

“Favorite memory for BHS. . .the Film Society was very memorable for me,” he said. “My senior year as a memory because I started assuming more leadership positions or doing things with things I was kind of an influential role.”