The Port Jefferson School District announced that Peggy Yin and Massimo Cipriano as the class of 2021 valedictorian and salutatorian, respectively.
Valedictorian Peggy Yin has had numerous academic accomplishments throughout her high school career. She was captain of the Science Olympiad team and has been a top medalist in both state and regional competitions. As a junior, she helped initiate a partnership to mentor elementary students in science fair projects.
Peggy served as the editor-in-chief of the Mast literary magazine, president of the Tri-M Music Honor Society, president of the Latin Club, captain of the Academic Team, an officer of the National Honor Society and an officer and treasurer of the Drama Club. This year, she helped to spearhead a food drive that raised more than $3,000 and food donations for those in need. Peggy is a founder and editor-in-chief of the news media platform, The Current, and is collaborating with Legislator Kara Hahn (D-Setauket) on several initiatives.
She has served as a summer intern at both Stony Brook University and Brookhaven National Laboratory, where she worked on cutting-edge projects.
Peggy is a National Merit Scholarship finalist, Battelle Scholarship recipient and a Coca-Cola Scholar semifinalist. Music plays an important role in her life and her musical achievements are plenty with All-County, All-State and All-Eastern honors as a vocalist and flutist among them. She has performed twice onstage as a soloist at Carnegie Hall, has been on the Manhattan School of Music Dean’s List for three years and has been a recipient of five international vocal competitions.
She is active in community and volunteer initiatives, including serving as a youth ambassador for Concerts in Motion and a live radio show host and broadcast engineer for China Blue on WUSB 90.1 FM.
Salutatorian Massimo Cipriano has excelled in many of his classes in Port Jefferson.
He was a member of the Student Organization as a freshman and sophomore and served as secretary for the class of 2021. He served as a student representative for the district’s PTSA and three years as president of the Varsity Club. This year, he was co-president.
Massimo has also been a Royal, a three- sport athlete in his high school career, as a member of the soccer, basketball, and baseball teams. He was also part of the founding team members of The Current, the independent online newspaper, where he is the head of the sports column.
He participates in numerous volunteer and community service actions and recently helped spearhead a pen pal program with veterans at the Long Island State Veterans Home in Stony Brook.
Citing English as a favorite subject, Massimo would like to study journalism when he begins college in the fall.
Massimo used his four years in high school to tap into many of the school’s offerings, helping him to become a well-rounded scholar. He commends several high school teachers with encouraging him to continue to embrace the world with kindness, empathy and a positive mindset, and values the mentors and role models they are to him. He is also pleased to have been a student in the district since childhood, citing his gratefulness to a school community that has encouraged lifelong relationships and inspired him to keep his best foot forward.
Both students were honored at a virtual celebration hosted by New York State Sen. Anthony Palumbo (R-New Suffolk), recognizing the accomplishments of Long Island’s most accomplished students.
“It was a great pleasure speaking with these remarkable students and hearing about their future plans, accomplishments and favorite memories from high school,” Palumbo said. “We wish them all the best in their future endeavors and congratulate them and their parents on their significant accomplishments.”