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2 Manhasset H.S. students honored in fundraising contest

Manhasset H.S. juniors Maddie Girard and Casey Roszko

Manhasset H.S. juniors Maddie Girard and Casey Roszko (holding flowers) won $2,500 college scholarships for raising money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Credit: Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Long Island Chapter

Two Manhasset High School students were named “Students of the Year” in a competition that raised a total of $347,214 to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Juniors Maddie Girard and Casey Roszko, who led team For the Love of the Blood, raised $118,252 in the second annual competition that enlisted local teens to raise the most money for blood cancer research in a seven-week span.

The students shared a $2,500 college scholarship. Girard has battled Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

The runner-up team was Ya Gotta Believe Too, which raised $63,836 and was led by Syosset High School sophomore Marissa Schneider.

“These students are an inspiration,” said Sara Lipsky, executive director of the society’s Long Island Chapter. “They embody the idea that anyone can make a difference with hard work and dedication.”

Three more students received Citizenship Awards and $1,000 college scholarships based on community involvement, volunteerism and commitment to the society’s mission. Those went to Tiffany Jiao of The Wheatley School, Maya Montalto of Babylon High School, and Jillian Bove of Ward Melville High School.

Avi Nessim, a sophomore at North Shore Hebrew Academy, received the competition’s Chairman Leadership Award.


Distinguished finalists

Ward Melville High School senior Madeline Mastriano and Northport High School senior Zoe Perles were among eight students statewide named Distinguished Finalists in this year’s Prudential Spirit of Community Awards, a nationwide program that .volunteerism. They both received an engraved bronze medallion.

Mastriano was selected for spearheading the Three Village Kids Lemonade Stand with her younger brother Joseph during the past five years, raising $37,000 for Stony Brook Children’s Hospital.

Perles co-founded an annual Halloween bake sale that has raised nearly $12,000 the past 12 years for a food pantry at First Presbyterian Church of Northport. She also served as a local camp counselor and team captain for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life fundraiser.

The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards is conducted by Prudential Financial in partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals.


National Merit Scholars

Fifteen Suffolk County high school students are among 2,500 nationwide named National Merit Scholars by the National Merit Scholarship Corp.

The students, who each receive $2,500, are recognized as having the “strongest combination of accomplishments, skills and potential for success in rigorous college studies,” the organization said. They were chosen from 15,000-plus finalists nationwide.

Honorees and their high schools are: Kevin Gmelin Jr., Center Moriches; Anthony Roman, Centereach; Raphael Leon Iskra, Commack; Ibuki Iwasaki, Earl L. Vandermeulen; Kasim Waqar, Half Hollow Hills East; Irene Antony, Half Hollow Hills West; Erin Fan, Hauppauge; Johnathan Yu, Mount Sinai; Julianne Starzee, Northport; Kyle Markland, Rocky Point; Paige Menneci, Sachem High North; Cindy Li, Smithtown East; Joseph Van Gostein, Walt Whitman; and Ethan Li and Michael Lu, Ward Melville.

Regional robotics winners

Twelve teams from Suffolk County schools won awards at the 19th annual Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition, which challenged teams to build 120-pound robots from a kit of parts.

This year’s theme, “FIRST Power Up,” had three-team alliances scoring points by delivering power cubes to their vault, gaining ownership of a scale or switch and climbing a scale. The regional contest, which drew nearly 80 teams islandwide, was held last month at Hofstra University.

Suffolk County award winners were: Mechanical Marauders of Bay Shore (Team No. 271), Quality Award; Floyd of Mastic Beach (Team No. 287), Industrial Design Award; Mohawks of Medford (Team No. 329), Judges’ Award; The PSIcotics of Lindenhurst (Team No. 533), Regional Finalist, Excellence in Engineering, Wildcard and Quality awards; Longwood Robotics of Middle Island (Team No. 564), Gracious Professionalism Award; The Mechanical Bulls of Smithtown (Team No. 810), Regional Chairman’s and Regional Winners awards; Team R.I.C.E. of Southold (Team No. 870), Regional Finalist, Gracious Professionalism and Wildcard awards; Robotechs of West Islip (Team No. 871), Innovation in Control Award; Robocats of Huntington Station (Team No. 2161), Judges’ Award; Hurricanes of Westhampton Beach (Team No. 3171), Regional Finalist, Innovation in Control and Wildcard awards; ThunderColts of Huntington Station (Team No. 3624), Creativity and Safety awards; Huntington Robotics (Team No. 5016), Regional Chairman’s Award; and Ward Melville High School of East Setauket (Team No. 6423), Regional Finalist Award.

In addition, the following teams qualified for the FIRST World Championships in Detroit on April 25-28: The PSIcotics, The Mechanical Bulls, Team R.I.C.E., Hurricanes, Huntington Robotics and Sachem Aftershock of Ronkonkoma (Team No. 263).


FACS Challenge

Twenty students were winners in the Long Island Family & Consumer Sciences Challenge, which asked participants to tackle topics in the home-and-careers field, such as designing outfits using inorganic or e-waste rubbish.

Winners and their school districts were: Allison Alvarez, Bellmore-Merrick; Briana Deakoum and Mina Papadadtonakis, East Meadow; Nigella Trinidad, Harborfields; Emily Kleinfeldt, Levittown; Angela Grippi, Emily Harris and Danielle Pearson, Massapequa; Danielle Rose and Caitlin Sternberg, Miller Place; Gianna Albanese, Abby Banner and Frankie Corozzo, North Shore; and Karelyn Chica, Niyanna Demmit, Yasmine Hardy, Nia Simone Morgan, Jordan Pendergrass, Laila Smith and Milan Torres-Laureano, Wyandanch.

CORRECTIONS: A previous version of this story incorrectly described Manhasset High School junior Casey Roszko’s health background and the sharing of a scholarship award between Roszko and classmate Maddie Girard.

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