Way to Go kids
A look at Long Island kids who have been featured in Newsday's Way to Go feature in LI Life.
Alyse Gordon, 17, a senior at Oyster Bay High School, has volunteered for an array of local service projects in recent years through her school's Interact Club. She also has traveled to Cambodia, Costa Rica and Tanzania for efforts ranging from teaching English to helping construct schools.
Ava Della Pietra, 9, a fourth-grader at W.S. Mount Elementary School in Stony Brook, is in the midst of a six-city national tour of Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas,” a musical based on the 1954 film.
Seth Barbosa, 17, a senior at Carle Place High School, is one of 20 Long Island students who were recent recipients of an Award of Merit from the Long Island Arts Alliance. To be considered, Barbosa submitted 10 to 15 pieces of his work and maintained an academic average of at least 95.
Megan Babbino, 16, a junior at Hauppauge High School, raised about $7,000 to purchase a plaque with the names of three local special-needs students, now deceased, for display at The Children’s Center at UCP Suffolk.
Emma Parente, 15, a sophomore at Kellenberg Memorial High School in Uniondale, led a dance class for children with special needs during the summer at the Church of St. Aidan in Williston Park.
Emily Linko, a senior at Hauppauge High School, recently took first place in the Mildred E. Smith Historical Essay Competition, sponsored by the Smithtown Historical Society. She received a $1,000 scholarship and was honored during the society's Heritage Ball on Oct. 16.
Christopher Koester, 17, a senior at Garden City High School, Chris Koester, has collected more than 1,100 pairs of socks — many with colorful designs and children’s cartoon characters — for pediatric patients at Cohen Children’s Medical Center in New Hyde Park.
Rae Specht, 15, a sophomore at The Stony Brook School, will receive the Leaders of Tomorrow Award in November 2014 from the Association of Fundraising Professionals’ Long Island Chapter.
Alexandra Tobin, 17, a senior at Half Hollow Hills High School East in Dix Hills, has mounted a campaign to increase awareness about reflex sympathetic dystrophy, a nervous system disorder that causes severe chronic pain. Tobin, who herself has RSD, has collected more than $115,000 in donations to help children afflicted with the disorder.
Jonathan Kapilian, 16, a junior at Long Beach High School, is among 380 tri-state students recently selected from 1,800 applicants for Columbia University’s Science Honors Program. Saturday classes are held on the Morningside Campus from September through May.
Annika Chang, 11, a student at Commack Middle School, took the top prize in an annual poster contest that the state Department of Environmental Conservation coordinated in celebration of Arbor Day in late April. More than 1,200 posters were submitted by youths statewide.
Mackenzie Pech, a senior at Bethpage High School, received the Aspirations in Computing Award from the National Center for Women in Technology due to her passion for technology and sharing of knowledge to encourage other young women and girls.
Brandon Epstein, a junior at Half Hollow Hills High School West, was one of eight U.S. students competing in the International Linguistics Olympiad in Beijing during the summer. He earned an honorable mention and his team placed third.
Jake Rosenblum, 16, a junior at Massapequa High School, has collected more than 300 pairs of gently used boys’ and girls’ sneakers from schoolmates since the spring through his nonprofit organization, called Sole Survivors.
Ryan Leone, 17, a senior at Sachem High School East in Farmingville, was elected to the top spot of governor this summer at Boys State, an American Legion program in which students learn about the legislative process by becoming part of mock local, county and state governments.
Jack Weinstein, a senior at Hauppauge High School, raised $2,700 this spring through a "Battle of the Buildings" that attracted more than 900 people and pitted teachers from the district's five schools against each other in a series of competitive activities. Here's the story
Angela Wee, 16, a violinist in the Syosset High School orchestra, performed last week with the Long Island Philharmonic during its 35th gala at Oheka Castle in Huntington. Here's the story
Alex Visslailli, 18, a senior at Carle Place High School, is a standout volunteer for tackling a series of service projects during the past year, including the mentoring of inner-city kids in Dallas and renovation of a courtyard at his high school. Here's the story
Isaiah Edwards, 17, a junior at Deer Park High School, drew accolades from the school district’s board of education recently for his volunteer work mentoring children with autism since his freshman year. Edwards hopes to be a special-education teacher. Here's the story
Madelyn Marinelli, a fifth-grader at Commack Road Elementary School, has spearheaded an effort to turn trash into cash to help people who need water and food. Here's the story
Sarah Laga, 16, a junior at Carle Place High School, is among 24 teens nationwide to receive the Bertie Green Junior Travel Award, given by the American Association of Teachers of Spanish & Portuguese, which includes an all-expenses-paid trip to Spain. Here's the story
Jaylan Umana, 12, a seventh-grader at Lincoln Orens Middle School in Island Park, has led a range of projects the past two years as head of the school's Builders Club. | Here's the story
Alexis Biemer, 17, a senior at Shoreham-Wading River High School, recently collected 30 baskets worth of birthday supplies for children at Stony Brook Children’s Hospital. Here's the story
Audrey Zhang, a fifth-grader at Island Trees Memorial Middle School, was selected to represent New York State at the National Art Education Association’s 2014 National Convention in San Diego. | Here's the story