NRHS students receive awards for academics, arts, athletics and service
One by one, more than 200 New Rochelle High School seniors on the verge of graduation strode across the auditorium stage to applause as they received honors for academics, athletics and service in the annual Student Awards Ceremony.
"It's really nice to see everyone cheer on their peers and to see how much we've achieved as a class," said 2017 salutatorian Melanie Anaya, who won several awards.
So many awards were bestowed that the event was divided into two sessions, a morning Student Awards Assembly on Friday, June 9, and the Student Awards Ceremony on Monday evening. Each was attended by hundreds of the students' friends, family members and schoolmates.
"You have set a very high bar for our next generation of students," Board of Education President Rachel Relkin told the honorees. "We are not only proud, but we are thankful to you for the strong example you have set."
In all, more than 400 awards were handed out, including scholarships, books, plaques, certificates and, for three students, fully-loaded MacBook Air laptops. They were arranged on tables on the stage, many wrapped in shining purple paper.
The awards came from a wide range of sources, including organizations such as the NAACP, the New Rochelle Council on the Arts and the New Rochelle Bar Association. Some of the scholarships were offered in honor of former New Rochelle residents. Others came from local businesses, including the Backstreet Gallery and Talner Jewelers.
"To the entire the community, whose generosity is seen on the table in front of us, thank you for supporting the future by supporting our great school district," said Schools Superintendent Dr. Brian Osborne.
The MacBooks, from To the Top with Laptops, were given to Maria Mendola, Adrian Morfin-Chavez and Tileeyah Rogers. The Girls Inc.'s Lucile Miller Wright Scholarship was given to Adriana Santiago, a member of Girls Inc. of Westchester, who was named a National Scholar by the organization. A Jandon Foundation Scholarship was awarded to Tileeyah Rogers. And Gwendolen M. Appleyard Fund Scholarships went to Ana Acevedo, Emma Berg, Amanda Ferrara, John Freeman, Ethan Manley, Claudia Morris, Francisco Orozco, Tatiana Rivera, Samuel Schiller, Kathryn Schoenherr, Lauren Toneatto and Michelle Zhi Hui Zhang.
New Rochelle High School Principal Reginald Richardson encouraged the students to reflect on the process they went through to achieve their awards.
"That's actually what's most important; the learning and the experiences that you took away from that process," he said.