Thursday, September 24, 2020

Lely’s Top 100 Scholars

From left: Sophomores Ella Kerchner, Tia Nielsen, Mariah Olcheski,  Molishka Heriveaux, Jordan Vann and Pilar Forrest. PHOTO BY TRESA NIELSEN

From left: Sophomores Ella Kerchner, Tia Nielsen, Mariah Olcheski, Molishka Heriveaux, Jordan Vann and Pilar Forrest. PHOTO BY TRESA NIELSEN

By Maureen Chodaba

“These are the cream of the crop of Lely High School,” said National Honor Society advisor, Professor Brian Milner as he welcomed the attendees to the annual Lely High School Top 100 Dinner at the Marco Island Hilton on May 26. Sponsored by the Lely High School National Honor Society (NHS), the event honors the top 25 academic achievers in each class.

NHS President Diana Alas said, “The National Honor Society enjoys celebrating the successes of the brightest students at Lely and believes they truly deserve to be recognized for their accomplishments. Students can enjoy seeing the fruits of their efforts while celebrating alongside families and friends.” The NHS began raising funds

Marco Island resident Sherry Johnson with daughter Ashley.

Marco Island resident Sherry Johnson with daughter Ashley.

for the dinner and senior scholarship awards last summer before the school year even began.

Lely High School Principal Ryan Nemeth encouraged the students by saying “Put forth your best efforts in all you do in your future.” Assistant Principal of Curriculum Ellen Keegan said, “It is remarkable to work with such bright and focused students.”

The theme of the evening was “The Keys to Success” – the keys of scholarship, service, character and leadership. NHS parliamentarian, Connor Fitzgerald described scholarship as “the quest for personal growth and success.” NHS Secretary Zachary Usser said “Service enables students to unlock their true potential,” while NHS Treasurer Jessica Ricciardelli added “We shouldn’t forget the little things such

Marco Island resident Susan Schiller with daughter Kathryn.

Marco Island resident Susan Schiller with daughter Kathryn.

as opportunities to help those in need, as this will produce a domino effect when that person pays it forward.”

“Humility defines the character of a true leader,” remarked NHS Vice-President Salomon Herrera Montes De Oca, who will attend Tufts University in the fall. President Diana Alas told the crowd “True leadership doesn’t mean being perfect. True leaders own up to their mistakes,” as she cited the importance of working together as a team.

Alas, who is looking forward to attending the University of Florida next year, spoke of her years at Lely High School. “When I started school at Lely, I was painfully shy and timid, but as the years have passed I have

NHS Vice-President Salomon Herrera Montes De Oca will be attending Tufts University.

NHS Vice-President Salomon Herrera Montes De Oca will be attending Tufts University.

grown to be confident in myself while developing the personal traits of hard work, determination and focus. I believe it is the environment that Lely created for me that has allowed me to grow into the person I am today.”

Guest speaker, Dr. Leslie Ricciardelli, executive director of the Secondary School Program, Collier County Public Schools, was introduced by her daughter, NHS Treasurer Jessica Ricciardelli. Dr Ricciardelli cautioned the students that “big offices and fancy cars can be fabulous benefits of achieving success, but at the end of the day, there has to be more.” She added “To the parents here tonight, the greatest success you have is sitting right next to you.” Ricciardelli

Zachary Ussery, NHS secretary. PHOTOS BY MAUREEN CHODABA

Zachary Ussery, NHS secretary. PHOTOS BY MAUREEN CHODABA

concluded by stressing the importance of knowledge as a source of strength throughout life. She said, “No one can ever take your education away from you.”

All 100 students were called forward and honored individually. Seniors were presented a special scholarship gift. A short bio was read about each student, describing his or her extracurricular and volunteer activities. These young athletes, musicians, artists, photographers and scholars also demonstrate a dedication to humanity by volunteering at NCH, Camp Mackle, Habitat for Humanity, Teen Court, the Collier County Public Libraries, the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life, their own individual churches, and many other charitable and non-profit organizations.

Lely High School NHS parliamentarian, Aliana Kellerhouse, who will

Aliana Kellerhouse, NHS parliamentarian, will attend the University of Floridain the fall.

Aliana Kellerhouse, NHS parliamentarian, will attend the University of Floridain the fall.

attend the University of Florida in the fall, shared this quote from Harriet Tubman: “Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”

The dinner was held in honor of these outstanding students. But I know that I speak for each and everyone who attended when I say that the honor was truly ours. One could not help but feel that we were in the presence of greatness. The evening was a look at the future. And indeed, the future looks very bright, as these remarkable young adults will forge a world filled with

NHS parliamentarian and Lely senior, Connor Fitzgerald, plans on attending Florida Gulf Coast University.

NHS parliamentarian and Lely senior, Connor Fitzgerald, plans on attending Florida Gulf Coast University.

the keys to success in the spirit of hope.

Lely High School’s Top 100 Scholars

Freshmen:

Juan Acosta

Francisco Antunez

Isabel Cruz

Alberto De Leon

Daviel Diaz Pajon

Bailey Dunstan

Saruthna Fleury

Jairo Garciga

Annastacia Granville

Kiley Hartman

Savannah Hoolihan

Madison Hopkins

Scott Martin

Lia Okenkova

Mark Oliger

Laura Poelstra

Mia Popoli

Sophie Sawyer

Josephine Torres

Yamileth Trejo

James Ussery

Ethan Van Boven

Ryan Witthoff

Melisa Yeseren

Monica Zillinger

 

Sophomores:

Esperanza Berduo-Castillo

Nicole Brotzman

Alejandro Castaneda

Roger Delgado

Pilar Forrest

Hector Gomez

Ethan Hartman

Nolan Hartz

Molishka Heriveaux

Betsabe Hernandez

Isabel Jancsok

Ella Kerchner

Laci Lusco

Daniel Nguyen

Tia Nielsen

Mariah Olcheski

Leyna Pinero

Alberto Reategui

Santiago Ruiz

Claudia Tariche-Fortes

Jane Townsend

Norma Urrutia

Jordan Vann

Curtis Wise

Patricia Zepeda

Juniors:

Stephanie Alvarez

Ellen Angersbach

Bethstyline Chery

Emma Crawford

Cristina Cruz-Aguilar

Mathew Estrada

Robert Garcia

Tatiana Gorospe

Bailey Greaves

Ashton Greusel

Michael Grossi

Erick Joseph

Patrick Joseph

Elizabeth Lopez-Lopez

Watson Marcelin

Robert Maxwell

Marissa Mengelkoch

Katherine Moss

Michaela Pinter

Maura Poling

Ester Ricardo

Sara Saintil

Charmine Sylvestre

Zuleima Toro

Sophia Torres

 

Seniors:

Diana Alas

Hunter Angersbach

Tristan Ashby

Diana Becerril

Brandy Cordes

Brian Diaz

Connor Fitzgerald

Andrew Fordon

Tatia Ghviniashvili

Salomon Herrera Montes

de Oca

Jonathon Irigoyen

Ashley Johnson

Aliana Kellerhouse Griffin

Marisa Muratore

Leslie Nunez

Vanessa Palacios

Bensey Pierre Louis

Thomas Popoli

Leslie Ramirez

Jessica Ricciardelli

Kathryn Schiller

Camila Simonelli

Zachary Ussery

Vayda Wasem

Kaitlyn Ziegelmaier

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