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’17 Blackwell Scholar Featured

Posted on Monday, July 29, 2013

In an article about Ballston Spa High School's class of 2013, valedictorian Stefani Schmitz '17 is quoted.

"We have so many individual paths before us. Whether we go to college, into the armed services or into the workforce, we need to dream big and seize our opportunities. And it's so important to send goodness into the world every day."

Schmitz is entering William Smith College this fall as a member of the Classes of 2017 and one of the classes' two Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell Scholars. As such, she has been accepted into the M.D. Class of 2021 at Upstate Medical University.

According to the article, "Along with managing rigorous academics, Schmitz has been a member of National Honor Society and Tri-M International Music Honor Society and was a varsity swimmer for the past five years and team captain for the past two years. Last summer, she completed a volunteer medical mission to Argentina."

The full article follows.

The Saratogian
Ballston Spa High School sends off Class of 2013

Jennie Grey • June 20, 2013

SARATOGA SPRINGS - On a beautiful Thursday, Ballston Spa High School's class of 2013 celebrated its graduation at Saratoga Performing Arts Center, honoring the academic careers of 295 students in purple and white.

Principal Kristi Jensen told the students they looked scholarly and angelic in their graduation robes but that she knew how humorous they could be. They had been on all kinds of lists, from the principal's list to the daily detention list. They learned much along the way.

"Find what speaks to you and do it," she advised them. "And remember the people who've supported you all the way."

Superintendent Joseph Dragone gave the commencement address, telling the students their lives are about the journey, not the destination. The graduates should not let others decide their destiny for them, he said.

"I was a musician 16 years ago, and now I'm a school administrator," Dragone said. "So, I am still on my journey. Don't be afraid to change your path."

Valedictorian Stefani Schmitz spoke of how important building a community is to Ballston Spa and to the school district. Since middle school, she has appreciated the connection among town residents and organizations.

"We have so many individual paths before us," Schmiz said. "Whether we go to college, into the armed services or into the workforce, we need to dream big and seize our opportunities. And it's so important to send goodness into the world every day."

Along with managing rigorous academics, Schmitz has been a member of National Honor Society and Tri-M International Music Honor Society and was a varsity swimmer for the past five years and team captain for the past two years. Last summer, she completed a volunteer medical mission to Argentina.

Schmitz will attend Hobart and William Smith Colleges as the Elizabeth Blackwell Scholar in Medicine and was accepted to the M.D. Class of 2021 at Upstate Medical University.

Salutatorian Sarah Evans said her high school years taught her unchanging truths, determination and how to deal with change. The graduates shouldn't rest on their laurels but should be proud of their accomplishments as they go on.

"If Harry Potter had had a school yearbook, it might have read only: ‘Harry Potter, Griffindor House, Hogwarts graduate. In a relationship with Ginny Weasley,' " Evans said. "But, of course, he accomplished much more - he struck down the ‘dark lord' and became a hero. We are more than our yearbook bios."

During her time at the high school, Evans was involved in National Honor Society, the Peer Mentoring program and school band, among other activities. She donated the majority of the profits from her book, "The Sour Little Lemon Tree."

Evans will attend the Honors College at the University of Vermont, majoring in English.

When the graduates received their diplomas, their parents and friends yelled out the students' names: "Kayla!" "Hey, Caitlin!" "Go, Mike!"

Each student had an well-deserved cheering section, and their achievements were well-celebrated.

 

 

 


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