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Way to go: Christin Aucapina, E. Hampton

Christin Aucapina, a senior at The Ross School,

Christin Aucapina, a senior at The Ross School, a private school in East Hampton, has volunteered for local and international community service programs during her high school years in an effort to give back to those who are less fortunate. Credit: Handout

Christin Aucapina's volunteer efforts have taken her from a food pantry in East Hampton to underprivileged schools and orphanages in Morocco and Nicaragua.

The senior at The Ross School, a private school in East Hampton, has volunteered for a number of local and international community service programs during her high school years in an effort to give back to those who are less fortunate.

She also was one of two Suffolk County students -- and one of only 1,000 nationwide -- to recently receive a 2012 Gates Millennium Scholarship based on her efforts. The scholarship is for an undetermined amount, she said, and is based on financial need and the cost of tuition, fees, books and living expenses for the academic year.

"It's important for me to give back, because it's something that I could've used as a child," said Aucapina, 17, whose mother is a single parent. Aucapina volunteers with Ronald McDonald House of Long Island's Kids Rock the House Program and is a member of her school's yearbook and Interact clubs, as well as its soccer and cheerleading teams. She will attend Brown University.

"She is already a proven leader, and I know she has a bright future ahead," said Michele Claeys, head of Ross School.

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