Monroe educators celebrate student achievement

MONROE, CT — In a difficult year interrupted by a global pandemic, students continued to work hard on their studies. On Monday night, the Board of Education celebrated the achievements of some of those who shined the brightest, both in and out of the classroom.

Board members recognized Masuk High School student representatives Molly Dauk, Briggs Parsell and Elizabeth Winington, who attended their meetings and kept everyone apprised of the latest news at their school.

The ceremony also recognized Masuk’s six National Merit Scholars and four students earning Western Connecticut Superintendents Association 2020 Student Recognition Awards.

Acting Superintendent of Schools Joseph Kobza said talking about students’ achievements reminds educators of why they do what they do.

Masuk Principal Jacob Greenwood announced the names of Masuk’s National Merit Scholars, who were among the top 3 to 4 percent of scorers on the PSAT, an exam taken by 1.6 million students in the U.S. every year.

Of Connecticut’s 221 top performing students, those from Masuk are Haley Baron, Christine Kerr, Steven Lee, Joseph Lemm, Ryan Unger and Victoria Wilenska.

“Congratulations and good luck next year,” Greenwood said.

Student Recognition Awards

Students winning Western Connecticut Superintendents Association 2020 Student Recognition Awards this year were Emma Campbell and Benjamin Londono, of Jockey Hollow Middle School, and Julia Tristine and Connor Scalia of Masuk.

Greenwood said these awards derive from compilations of a lifetime of work, adding educators recognize how the recipients worked extremely hard every single day throughout their academic careers.

Jockey Hollow Principal Jack Ceccolini and Greenwood read from programs introducing each student.

Emma Campbell: Emma is a natural leader, who sets a positive example for all middle school students. She’s been a den leader where she assisted with sixth grade orientation and continued working with our sixth graders in organization and support of academics throughout the school year.

She, herself, has consistently earned high honor roll status and excels in our more challenging courses like honors algebra and Spanish II.

Emma is a wonderful musician and cellist. She performs with our school string ensemble and our school honor ensemble Super Strings. She is polite and kind and is respected by both her peers and teachers.

Emma works hard every day and, as a student, brings a smile to everyone each and every day. She is a role model and exemplifies our school motto Lions’ pride, respect responsibility and safety.

Benjamin Londono: Ben is an exceptional young man, who sets a positive example for those around him. Ben has found the magic balance between striving academically and pursuing personal interests.

Despite being an influential member of the middle school basketball team, Ben still manages to excel in all of his classes. Throughout middle school he has challenged himself with higher level courses, such as honors geometry and world language.

As a learner, he is goal oriented, reflective and intrinsically motivated. In all of his classes Ben enjoys the process of learning and goes the extra mile on assignments and projects. He exhibits excellent problem solving skills while working through projects.

Additionally, he is a strong collaborator, so he is able to work with all of his peers to enhance their learning as well as his own. He is a quiet leader. Someone who is quite modest and humble, but he is certainly a role model for others.

In addition to basketball, Ben is a talented baseball player and member of the Jockey Hollow Strings Ensemble.

Julia Tristine: Outgoing, funny, kind, responsible, well rounded are the first words that come to mind when you think of Julia. She’s maintained solid grades and a demanding course load throughout her high school career, while balancing extra curricular activities at Masuk and also participates in a choir group at a local private boys preparatory high school and enjoys singing in her free time.

She’s been a member of the girls’ swim team and basketball team. Julia’s desire to pursue a career in elementary education, her caring, outgoing nature would be a natural fit for this profession.

Connor Scalia: Connor is an amazing young man. Not only is he hard working, reliable and kind, but he’s overcome tremendous adversity in his life. He truly understands the importance of living in the moment and living every day towards the last.

His perspective has led Connor to do everything he tackles to the best of his ability. This is true for academics, athletics, community service and interpersonal interactions.

Connor is thinking of pursuing a career in school counseling and coaching. Whatever his choice will be, there’s no doubt he will be a tremendous success.

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