Limited Seats Available for 2024–2025 Click here to apply to multiple schools easily through our online portal.

Limited Seats Available for 2024–2025

Blog Graphic - Founders Prize Winner Interview - Abby Foresman_v3

Immersed in Animation: Catching Up With BASIS Mesa Alumna Abby Foresman

BASIS Charter Schools is proud to have incredibly bright, hardworking students—and we love watching these students continue to flourish after they graduate from our schools!

Today we’re catching up with Abby Foresman, who graduated from BASIS Mesa in 2023. Abby is currently studying Animation at Barrett, the Honors College at Arizona State University.

Abby has been drawn to animation from a young age. During her senior year at BASIS Mesa, she decided to pursue a Senior Project focused on pre-production animation.

“Animation has always been a huge escape for me, and I want to be able to create that for others,” says Abby.

Read on to learn more about Abby’s Senior Project experience and how BASIS Charter Schools prepared her for life at ASU!

Studying animation as a BASIS Charter School senior

In the final trimester of their senior year, BASIS Charter School students have the opportunity to complete an off-campus internship project centered around a topic of their choosing. These Senior Projects are a fantastic way for students to gain experience in their field of study and differentiate themselves as they begin their college career.

Abby’s Senior Project was titled “Before ‘Happily Ever After’: The Art of Storytelling in Pre-Production Animation.” Under the mentorship of Kelly Koay, a lighting and compositing artist who has worked for Disney and DreamWorks, Abby constructed an original animated story called “Star-Crossed.” Her final product was an animatic, a sequence of storyboards set to a soundtrack.

“Thanks to my mentor Kelly, I learned the value of collaboration and constructive criticism,” says Abby. “Seeing the project through to the end gave me confidence and showed me that I am capable of crafting and telling a good story.”

Abby’s impressive project earned her the 2023 Founders’ Prize, a $10,000 scholarship awarded to BASIS Charter School students with the top Senior Projects in a given academic year. Her project was chosen for the category of “Greatest Initiative” due to the proactive role she took in pursuing her passions and executing on her vision.

Transitioning from high school to college

Abby is currently majoring in Animation at Arizona State University, where she’s had the opportunity to meet new friends who share her love of storytelling. “I’ve never been more surrounded by so many like-minded creatives,” she says. “Just about everyone in my classes shares the same zest for storytelling and artistic flair that I do!”

Abby tells us that BASIS Mesa was instrumental in helping her adjust to college. “Going to BASIS gave me a certain drive and work ethic that has proved to be a complete game changer,” she says. “You need to have a high level of academic discipline and responsibility at college, which I felt like I had already developed thanks to BASIS.”

Turning ideas into reality

Abby says she has been continuing to work on her “Star-Crossed” project in between assignments. She has been exploring different concepts and has some ideas for how to extend her original animatic.

In terms of future career goals, Abby says she would love to work in storyboarding or character design. “Being able to start with a small idea and shape it into a concrete project is really interesting to me,” she says. “My Senior Project went a long way in showing me just how crucial pre-production is.”

Abby cites DreamWorks Animation as a major source of inspiration for her creative projects. “My Senior Project mentor, Kelly, worked on the new ‘Puss in Boots’ movie and was able to tell me a lot of behind-the-scenes stories about its production. That movie took a lot of stylistic risks that really paid off. It would be amazing to follow in Kelly’s footsteps and work on a DreamWorks project someday.”

We wish Abby all the best with her studies and are excited to see what types of projects she creates next!

To learn more about what our students, teachers and alumni have been up to lately, check out the latest news and resources from the BASIS Charter Schools network. Our tuition-free public charter schools inspire students to lead, innovate and shape bright futures. With a wide variety of courses, we encourage students to pursue their individual passions. Find a BASIS Charter School near you and schedule a tour to see our students and teachers in action!

Amy Licht
Comments are closed.