By Victoria Espinoza
Sabrina Qi and Trevor Jones are the valedictorian and salutatorian, respectively, of the Harborfields graduating class of 2016.
Qi was named a scholar in the 2016 National Merit Scholarship Program, she received the National School Development Council Academic Growth & Student Leadership Award and was presented the Daughters of American Revolution Good Citizenship Award. She is enrolled in six Advanced Placement courses and one college-level language class. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Global Justice Club and Science Research Club. Qi will attend Duke University in the fall with plans of majoring in biomedical engineering and biophysics. “I think Harborfields has truly prepared me for the future with all the classes I have taken,” Qi said. “As long as you take the classes that you are interested in, the teachers will prepare you for what you want to study in college.”
Jones is also enrolled in six Advanced Placement courses at Harborfields and is the class president. Among his high school experiences, he interned for U.S. Rep. Steve Israel (D-Huntington), worked at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and North Shore-LIJ to conduct medical research, and he served as the student representative at the board of education meetings. He will attend Boston College on a full scholarship with plans to major in biology or public policy.
“I am going to miss the community,” Jones said. “The classes and teachers are great, but at the end of the day, what I am going to miss most are my peers, my friends and the environment we have here.”
Ian Buitenkant is this year’s valedictorian at Northport High School, with Emily Labruna following as salutatorian.
Buitenkant is a National Merit Commended Scholar, and has been the math department’s Student of the Month. He interned at the Academy of Information Technology last summer with SeniorNet, an organization that teaches computer skills to retired and elderly people. The valedictorian enrolled in 10 AP courses throughout his four years and was awarded the AP Scholar with Honors in 2015. He is a member of the high school Mathletes Team, and his junior year had one of the highest cumulative scores among all participants in a multi-week competition sponsored by the Suffolk County Math Teachers Association. Outside of the classroom, he can be found at a chessboard. He was named the Suffolk County High School Chess champion in 2013, and is also the president of the high school Chess Club. Buitenkant was also on the high school varisty tennis team for three years. He plans to attend Stony Brook University’s Honors College, majoring in computer science as a member of the Honors Program, and hopes to become a software developer in the future.
Labruna is an International Baccalaureate Diploma Candidate. She spent two summers at Cornell University and Johns Hopkins University through the Packard Scholars Program, and her participation in these programs led her to want to continue neuroscience research in college. Labruna was a math department Student of the Month and is a National Merit Commended Scholar. She is a member of the Mathletes, the Academic Team, varsity softball, the National Honor Society, and Schools for Schools, where she has helped raise money for the education of children in poverty. The salutatorian also has a third-degree black belt in Jiu-Jitsu. She will be attending Johns Hopkins University with a major in neuroscience.
Huntington High School’s valedictorian and salutatorian are Rachel Carpenter and Olivia Stamatatos, respectively.
Carpenter is the president of Huntington’s branch of National Honor Society, and has participated in all eight of the high school’s drama productions. “When I first moved here four years ago, I had no idea I would have been in the position I am in now,” she said. “I have the people of Huntington High to thank for my growth and success.”
Stamatatos is president of the school’s branch of Italian National Honor Society, a member of the Mathletes, wind esemble, and Tri-M Music National Honor Society. She also takes dance lessons at the Lynch School of Ballet in Huntington. She plans to pursure a degree in biochemistry “in order to gain a deeper understanding of underlying factors that contribute to the curative properties in natural substances.” She credited the staff at Huntington. “The teachers of Huntington High School have not only provided me with a high quality education, but have also built strong relationships with me and have always made me feel welcome,” she said.