Bezi Yohannes

Estes Family 1693 Scholar


Lorton, VA (Hayfield High School)

Why William & Mary
I wish I could say that I picked W&M for academic reasons, or after deep contemplative thought. But that would not be the complete truth, because I had already determined that W&M was the only college for me at the age of seven.

You see, after visiting Williamsburg several times, and driving by the W&M campus, I began to notice the unique architecture of the buildings, and I decided that they looked like castles. And because I was obsessed with castles and princesses and knights, I begged my parents to let us stay in a “castle” instead of the usual hotels. After a few hours of my pestering, my mom finally gave in.

“Bezi, that’s not a castle!” she said, her exasperation clear. “That’s a college, where smart people go.”

Just like that, my eyes were opened and I quickly made the connection. If I was smart, I could go to college in a castle! In my young mind, that decided the matter.

Obviously that was not the end of it. At some point I realized that I needed to make the important decision of which college I would attend based on more than my whimsy, only to do some research and discover that W&M was one of the best schools in the nation.

From then on, every new fact I learned about W&M served to further cement my love for the college. I loved the medium-sized campus and smaller student body because of the opportunity to connect with my professors in a way that I could not in a larger school. I loved that it was close enough to home that I could stay connected with my family, but far enough away that I could begin to assert my independence. Not only did W&M have an amazing law school if I chose to pursue my growing interest in Constitutional law, but its liberal arts focus meant that I could explore my long-held passion for writing and the humanities during my undergraduate years.

In the end, I connected with W&M both academically and on a deeply personal level, and there was no question in my mind that this was where I would spend the next four years of my academic career.


English major and minor in Medieval and Renaissance Studies

  • Copy Editor for the Flat Hat
  • Prose Editor and Assistant to the Editor in Chief for The William and Mary Review
  • Secretary for the Media Council
  • Tribe Ambassador for the Office of Undergraduate Admission
  • English department liaison for the Office of Undergraduate Admission
  • Independent study on gender in the fiction of C.S. Lewis
Spring 2017bezi_oxford

I studied Arthurian literature (in the English, Welsh, Scottish, and Icelandic traditions), Roman Britain, C.S. Lewis, and medieval history at The University of Oxford. 

W&M Awards
  • Phi Delta Sigma honor society member

Summer 2015
High School Activities
  • EIC of Hayfield’s News Magazine
  • President and Founding Member of Hayfield chapter of National English Honors Society
  • Keyboardist
  • Secretary of the National Honors Society
  • Sunday School Teacher
  • Published a novel, Secrets of Meynch
  • National Achievement Finalist and scholarship recipient
  • AP Scholar