Marauder of the Week

Each week, members of the staff nominate 2 seniors for the spotlight, for outstanding accomplishments ranging from citizenship to extracurricular activities to scholastic. Our own Highpoint school newspaper staff profiles these students, and the interviews are published in the Belmont Citizen-Herald and posted on the bulletin board by the main office. We are excited for this opportunity to highlight a broad group of the amazing students at BHS!

Marauder of the Week: Friday, April 3rd, 2020

Coleen Valery

Coleen Valery, a kind and funny senior with an interest in music and community service, is an excellent choice for Marauder of the Week. Coleen’s favorite classes are anatomy and psychology, but the teacher she cites as the most influential in her time at BHS is physical education teacher Ms. Marino, who has always been “supportive of [Coleen] and all students.”

Outside of school, Coleen is in a band, works two jobs, and is involved with the UNICEF club. Additionally, in the fall, she performed in the BHS marching band, where her dedication and positive attitude brightened the trumpet section and made both rehearsals and games unforgettable. Asked to reflect on the high school and the Belmont community, Coleen joked that although she may “high key roast this school,” she actually thinks that the opportunity to attend BHS is a “blessing” and loves “being surrounded by pretty cool people.” Coleen is passionate about helping people in need, and believes that “the more fortunate ones should help the ones who are less fortunate.” She channels this passion into participating in the UNICEF club, which aims to improve quality of life and provide access to education for children around the world.

Coleen has two pieces of advice for other BHS students. The first is that every year of high school counts; she says that students are often told that “junior year is the most important,” but in reality even freshman year matters, as it helps to prepare students for the rest of high school. Her second piece of advice is that students’ lives can be stressful and overwhelming, so it is important to “give yourself a moment to chill. Your mental health comes first,” she says. “Always.”

By Claire Svetkey

Heather Sorenson

Senior Heather Sorenson is a clear candidate for Marauder of the Week. Heather’s favorite classes are anatomy and psychology, because she is interested in “how the human brain and body works” and plans to enter the medical field in college. Mr. Abruzzese, Heather’s sophomore year chemistry teacher, is the teacher she cites as her most influential; he was “incredible,” she says, because he cared deeply about every student, and his routine of spending at least ten minutes each class discussing a random topic in “extreme depth” inspired Heather to learn more about “science and the world.” Outside of school, Heather’s interests are varied: she is involved with indoor winter track and rugby, she sang with the BHS Madrigal Singers in December, and she serves in a leadership position in her church’s youth group. (With all these extracurriculars, Heather is justifiably proud of “keeping [her] grades decent during senior spring.”)

Heather’s words of wisdom for other BHS students are complex and timely. To begin, she shares two quotes: first, regarding one’s own perceived flaws, “those who care don’t matter, and those who matter don’t care”; and second, “If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you,” which is her “favorite quote of all time.” However, Heather’s most important advice is to “appreciate the people you are surrounded with,” and, especially in high school, to “make the best of your situation” while it is happening, because “there are always good things around you” even if they’re hard to see. Coronavirus, she says, has highlighted how “you don’t ever fully appreciate what you have until it is taken away from you”; especially in light of the current pandemic, it is essential to make an effort to “appreciate the good things you have,” because circumstances can change quickly and “you don’t want to live with regret.”

By Claire Svetkey

Marauder of the Week: Friday, March 6th, 2020

Elisabeth Pitts

Elisabeth Pitts, a vibrant and dedicated student, is this week’s Marauder of the Week. Her hard work in the PAC, Highpoint Newspaper, and chorus has made her more than worthy of this recognition. Her love for psychology, English, and science comes from the collaborative element in her courses that gives her the ability to both discuss ideas with different groups and further develop her own progress as a writer. Elisabeth’s most influential teachers, Mrs. Elfreth (AP Biology), Mr. Flam (Advanced Acting and Directing / PAC), and Mr. Markley (AP English) have all impressed her with their passion for their subjects and the support they give students. The care these teachers showed their students gave Elisabeth the strength to “face difficult situations head on”. Outside of school, Elisabeth also maintains a busy schedule, acting as a Highpoint Magazine student editor, participating in Irish step dancing, acting and helping the costume department in the PAC, tutoring at Tutoring Plus, and taking lessons in both voice and piano. Her impressive ability to juggle multiple time consuming activities helps emphasize her great ambition. She finds pride in further pursuing her passions outside of school, having gone to a Emerson Pre-College Writing Workshop the summer before her sophomore year. The Workshop served as an outlet for her to write creatively and receive constructive feedback on her work. It spurred her to take Ms. Santiago’s Creative Writing class and connected her with another girl that later became her best friend. Elisabeth plans on majoring in Political Science or International Relations in the future, reflecting her love for student advocacy, writing, and politics. With her degree she hopes to work in an organization that focuses on development, like the International Rescue Committee. Elisabeth believes that while high school can be a “volatile time”, it can also help develop your identity if you “learn to be comfortable asking questions”, as it can help not only your self-confidence, but also change the way you interact with others. Congratulations to Elisabeth Pitts!

By Hallie Liu

Daniel Artamonov

A calm and collected senior, Daniel Artamonov definitely deserves the title of Marauder of the Week.

Inside of school, Daniel likes classes relating to the sciences, having been exposed to them at a young age due to his family. In particular, he appreciates the two physics teachers he has had at BHS: Mr. Loosmann and Mr. Lefebvre. Daniel says that they helped him “refine my interests that I'll pursue in college and helped me discover new ways to approach problems I face”. Daniel also enjoys working with computers and electronics, and plans to study electrical engineering.

Outside of school, Daniel works as a martial arts instructor and participated in the BHS ski team, which he says “was a great time”. Lastly, Daniel reminds future BHS students that “The hands down coolest thing a person in high school can have is a bed time of 9 pm”.

By Alice Liu

Marauder of the Week: Monday, March 2nd, 2020

Dylan Workman

This week’s Marauder of the Week, senior Dylan Workman, has the marks of a true sensation. Through his keen eye for the math-based side of the sciences, Dylan has developed the aspiration of becoming an engineer. Classes like Physics and Chemistry are especially interesting to him, as they are more heavily reliant on the knowledge and understanding of mathematics. This fueled his desire to take A.P. Physics, a class he thoroughly enjoyed because of its fascinating content and unique hands-off approach to teaching. At the high school, Dylan is the captain of the engineering and design club, where he is able to discuss physics problems, robotics, and create things using a 3D printer with fellow students. As if that was not enough, Dylan also volunteers his time by giving back to the Chenery Middle School. There, he teaches a Live Action Role Play Class, where students learn about the building of props and skills of acting in Live Action Role Play. His passions include the ability to build, consisting of things like Robotics, 3D Printing, Coding, and Metal-working. He hopes to pursue these passions through college by majoring in Engineering Physics. As he begins the second half of his last year here in Belmont, Dylan encourages underclassmen to seek subjects and classes that they enjoy, since we are lucky enough to go to a school that offers an innumerable amount of courses. In Dylan’s words, “Just have fun, try things out, and learn from what you do along the way”. We wish you the best of luck Dylan!

By Ani Belorian

Anna Doherty

Kind, compassionate, and a source of inspiration to us all, senior Anna Doherty is this week’s well-deserving Marauder of the Week.

Here at BHS, Anna is president of the Medicine Club and a member of National Honor Society. Outside of school, she is a captain of the women’s team on Gator Swim Club, and she credits swimming for teaching her many important life lessons in and out of the pool, including how to be resilient, driven, and dedicated. Besides swimming, another place Anna has drawn inspiration is from biology teacher Ms. Chen, who, according to Anna, “is equally passionate about a student’s success as she is about the subject material.” Anna demonstrates the same passion in her own endeavors, and volunteers weekly at Perkins School for the Blind, which she loves because she is able to help those in need and make a positive impact on other kids. Anna’s favorite subject in school is English; she’s most passionate about her Capstone project, which focuses on mental health in female athletes, a topic that’s especially relevant to her own life as a competitive swimmer. She hopes to be able to raise awareness and change the negative stigma around mental health, encouraging more athletes to seek the help they need.

After high school, Anna plans to swim in college and study nursing or another form of health science. Her advice to future BHS students is short and sweet: “Although cliché, do what makes you happiest.”

By Katarina Chen

Marauder of the Week: Friday, February 14th, 2020

Kate Devitt

An exceptional student involved in the community and passionate about many topics, Kate Devitt proves unquestionably deserving of the title of the Marauder of the Week.

Kate's favorite subject is English, stemming from a love to read and write that began in elementary school. She enjoys analyzing literature, and, at times, even essay writing, for “the process is open-ended and requires creative thought.” When asked which teacher has been the most influential to her, Kate responded with Mrs. Guastella, her sophomore and junior year English teacher. Kate explains that “[Mrs. Guastella's] ability to accept and appreciate every idea expressed in class encouraged [her] to interpret literature's meaning in [her] own way.” Furthermore, she adds that Mrs. Guastella “[u]ltimately, taught [her] to have confidence in [her] assertions, how to take creative risks, and how to channel [her] ‘inner voice’ into writing effectively.”

Outside of school, Kate participates in several activities, including being the captain of the track team, playing field hockey in the fall, student government, and the Climate Action Club. However, the one thing Kate absolutely loves to do are the morning announcements each day with Caroline Findlay; they are often her favorite part of the day, for she enjoys brainstorming songs with which to open the announcements and phrases with which to close them. Additionally, Kate always looks forward to her daily conversations with Caroline and the office staff. Kate states she is “proud to be the voice of Belmont High!” As for her passions, Kate says she has many, such as music, running, reading, writing, Rancatore's ice cream, and climate change. But one of her strongest beliefs is in the importance of sleep-away summer camp. Kate describes her last summer, where she went to Camp Huckins for her eighth year, this time as a counselor of forty girls for nine weeks rather than a camper for two weeks. She explained that “the electronic free lifestyle, the lake and nature-oriented activities, and the immense leap out of one’s comfort zone is what makes the experience so meaningful and genuinely fun.” Kate immensely cherishes the bonds she created with each camper, and will always admire her spirited, fun-loving, and intuitive co-counselor Sophie.

As words of advice to current and future Belmont high school students, Kate leaves us with, “High school can be tough, but to an extent, it is what you make of it. Find something that profoundly challenges you, whether it is a sport or a hobby, and pursue it! You can find passion in unlikely places, so keep your eyes wide open,” reminding everyone that it's up to them to make the best of high school and to not shy away from taking risks.

By Tiffany Hu

Marauder of the Week: Friday, February 7th, 2020

Grace Patrone

An outstanding student involved heavily in extracurriculars and in the community, Grace Patrone is extremely passionate about performing arts and helping out around town. She has been in the Performing Arts Company since her freshman year and continues to participate in all of its much-loved events including Broadway Night, improv shows, and the spring musical. Grace describes working with such a dedicated group of people as a “great outlet” for her creativity: singing, acting and dancing are both her passions and her skills. With such a commitment to the performing arts, there is no doubt that Grace is very proud of her participation in the PAC; she says that it has been a wonderful part of her life at BHS.

Not only does she excel in her creative pursuits, Grace is an inquisitive scholar, eager to learn about the world around her and the effects people have on it. She currently takes Global Leadership with Dr. Shea, who has influenced her greatly through his balanced, fun and engaging class. The class, Grace says, has put her on “an inspirational path” toward seeking those in need and helping them. In addition, the class provides “valuable insights into many of the world’s challenges and helps build awareness about the possible contributions people… can make both in their communities and globally.”

Her interest in helping others can also be seen through her frequent involvement with the Belmont community: Grace has assisted the local food pantry, worked with younger children, and most recently helped make care packages for soldiers overseas. As evidenced by her volunteer work, Grace is always trying to spread kindness, and she explains, “I am looking for a way to channel that into a possible profession. I know my passion for justice and peace will always be a part of my life.” She has earned the President’s Volunteer Service Award multiple times, and additionally has received recognition for her academic achievements in her English and foreign language classes. To other BHS students, Grace shares her words of wisdom: “No matter what hard times come your way in your life, try to find the good in it, no matter how hard that may be. Finding that good, makes it all seem a little less disheartening.”

Lastly, here is a fun fact about Grace. She shared, “My spirit animal is a horse, because in my opinion they are animals with great power, beauty, and gracefulness, which are all qualities worth aspiring to.” Congratulations to Grace Patrone for being chosen as Marauder of the Week!

By Katherine Bai

Marauder of the Week: Friday, January 31st, 2020

Soren Hallet

This week’s honoree is senior Soren Hallet, and it’s no secret why! A talented musician and wonderful friend, Soren has done it all, from winning Belmont Idol to performing at the annual WTHH coffeehouse. He says that the most influential teachers he has had have been Ms. Fant, Mr. Flam, and Ms. Williams, who have been supportive and inspiring, each in their own way. “Whether it was just enjoying their class or needing life advice, I knew they were always there if I needed them” he says, and he called Ms. Williams amazing in particular for how welcome she makes her students feel on a daily basis. Soren’s favorite subject is currently psychology, and the class has captivated him so much that he is planning on majoring in psychology after graduation! Winning Belmont Idol was definitely a highlight of his high school career, Soren says, and he is currently learning how to sing again with his new voice, as he hopes to be able to get back onstage soon. One thing he’s most proud of, besides winning Belmont Idol, Soren says that it’s his “growth as a person in general over the years… I’ve managed to pull through and overcome obstacles thanks to the help of staff and support from my family.” It’s fitting, then, that his advice to younger students is about being attuned and caring towards yourself: “take everything day by day and definitely reach out for help when you need it. You’ll make it!”

By Elisabeth Pitts

Abigail Yu

Striving to make a difference in the community, Abigail Yu fills the halls with her compassion and dedication to Belmont High School. You can spot her running multiple clubs, some of which are the most well-attended at BHS, or dedicating her time to commitments made years ago such as being an assistant for Ms. Shah in Geometry classes. Because of Abby’s incredible influence and devotion to her school and community, there’s no question as to how she earned the President’s Volunteer Service Award (250+ volunteer hours), her spot as a National Honor Society member, or even the BHS Model Marauder Award.

Although there are not many Abby Yu’s, there are even fewer people who are so committed to inspiring young students through involvement in many activities. Abby works at Mathnasium twice a week and additionally emboldens the entire BHS community with her engagement during “Make a Statement Day.” Not only are her achievements impressive – she is the president of the BHS Asian American Club, co-president of the BHS UNICEF Club, and co-president of the BHS Working to Help the Homeless Club – but also the mere fact that she has managed to accomplish so much in her four years at BHS is incredibly inspiring.

We can learn so much from this compassionate Marauder of the Week, and heed her wise advice: “[D]on't get caught up in the small things, whether it's a rough test in school or a stressful work shift - keep the bigger picture and keep your head up!”

By Joyce Gong and Elia Matrician

Marauder of the Week: Friday, January 17th, 2020

Vanessa Yuzlek

There is no doubt that Vanessa Yuzlek, an accomplished student in academics, proves the perfect candidate for the Marauder of the Week.

For Vanessa, she enjoys all school subjects because they all teach her incredible things. However, this year, she especially enjoys Psychology and Zoology. Vanessa explains that she "enjoy[s] psychology because it teaches [her] all these different concepts that applies to everyday life,'' while also revealing a lot of information about life. As for Zoology, Vanessa is an animal lover, and learning many different and interesting facts about animals is appealing to her. When asked which class or teacher at Belmont has been the most influential to her, Vanessa responds that "each class and teacher has influenced [her] to become better and better at that subject" allowing her to become a more skilled student overall.

Currently, Vanessa is not involved in extracurricular activities, for she takes her schoolwork seriously, and spends a lot of time studying and improving. However, in the past, she has been in clubs as well as taken classes in Armenian dancing. From this, it is not surprising that Vanessa is most proud of maintaining a good academic record throughout her years at Belmont High School. Vanessa says she works incredibly hard on her "school work and study hours", which can be seen from her academic records. Aside from being a diligent student, Vanessa is passionate about reading, because she believes one can learn a lot from reading a book and "it is a nice distraction from all the stressful things going around".

Vanessa's advice to the students of Belmont High is sweet and simple: "Always work hard, believe in yourself, and never give up, but also remember to have fun as high school zips by".

By Tiffany Hu

Christian Rudder

Christian Rudder is a kind and creative senior whose hard work makes him a stellar choice for Marauder of the week. Christian’s favorite subjects in school are robotics and AP Computer Science. He enjoys the design and programming processes, saying that “it doesn’t seem like work at all, but rather a puzzle I have to solve with logic and reasoning.”

Being a passionate student of art and design, Christian fills his free time with drawing, gouache painting, animation and designing. His lifelong goal is to “design cunning and functional infrastructure” that will “captivate [anyone] whose eyes lay upon it.” He enthusiastically puts this dream into words: “I believe architecture to be the greatest form of art because every building is like a story, an emotion, a personality that you get to interact with, allowing any one person to indulge themselves in the art truly.”

Christian is always striving to be the best version of himself. He feels greatly supported by his community, especially by his freshman history teacher, Ms. Dashoff, who saw the potential in him and put the “pep back in [his] step.” She reminded Christian to always put more effort into his work because there is always room to improve. Additionally, Christian enjoys being part of Improv Ensemble and is involved in the robotics club.

Christian’s concise yet wise advice to other BHS students is that “hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.”

By Agnes Shen

Marauder of the Week: Friday, December 20th, 2019

Merrie Chasse

Merrie Chasse, a current senior at Belmont High School, is a motivated, hardworking student with a passion for the sciences. These sciences include neuroscience and chemistry, despite the difficulty of these topics. But with the accomplishment of these topics comes much satisfaction. It’s no wonder that some of her favorite teachers from her time at BHS are in the sciences, as they have helped her strengthen her analytical skills and deepened her love of science. Merrie’s Capstone project for English dives into the psychology of travel and how traveling affects society. She has traveled with her family around Europe many times, which has given her a unique perspective on her research and travel in general.

Merrie is involved in many leadership positions at the high school. This includes being captain of the high school swim team and a Performing Arts Company officer. She was also co-officer for Project Bread during her junior year. As a part of the PAC, she has thoroughly enjoyed the opportunities she has had and the new friendships she has made. Another leadership position outside of the school is Merrie’s role as captain of the Belmont recreational swim team, where she has coached many young and developing swimmers and learned new skills. Leadership is a significant part of Merrie’s high school experience. Some of her proudest accomplishments are going to sectionals and states for swim in senior year and her involvement in the many shows the PAC performs. Her piece of advice to other BHS students is to make sure they join activities that they are genuinely interested in, because in those activities one can make the closest friends and discover more passions and interests.

By Sanya Malhotra

Marauder of the Week: Friday, December 13th, 2019

Honor Hickman

Honor Hickman, a kind and talented senior with a passion for music, is a clear choice for Marauder of the Week. Her favorite subjects are the humanities: AP Psychology, because it helps her “understand [her]self and others”; and English, which challenges her to approach topics from multiple perspectives and has, in her opinion, made her “more open minded and understanding.” However, the class that has been most influential to Honor is, unsurprisingly, band; she started band in sixth grade, and says that since then, it has shaped her life. She works incredibly hard to be the “best musician and person” she can be, explaining that the part of learning about the arts that “resonates” with her most is that “it doesn’t just apply to one thing,” but instead “it applies to our whole lives.”

Honor participates in many musical ensembles, both within and outside of BHS. She is involved in the BHS Jazz Ensemble – she frequently takes solos on more than one instrument over the course of a concert – as well as a wind quintet, the Senior Massachusetts Youth Wind Ensemble and a jazz orchestra. Additionally, she is the president of Belmont’s Tri-M Music Honor Society chapter, and last year she won the annual BHS Concerto Competition. Honor is most proud of “being a part of the performing arts community at BHS,” because she appreciates the dedication and hard work of those involved in every facet of this community, including band, orchestra, chorus and the Performing Arts Company. Most of Honor’s free time is spent practicing or writing music, although she also noted that she loves to bake and to “make little critters out of clay.”

Honor’s advice for other BHS students is simple and sweet: No matter how much stress you are under or how many problems you are facing, always remember the things you love, and “let those things propel you forward.”

By Claire Svetkey

Nico Noack

Senior Nico Noack, this week’s Marauder of the Week, is a dedicated athlete and a strong student who is particularly focused on the sciences. His favorite classes at BHS both were science electives: AP Physics and Intro to Robotics. He also cites Intro to Robotics as one of the most influential classes he has taken, because it helped him realize that he was interested in “engineering and creating.” Another class that he found influential was Social Justice by the Numbers, which changed the way he thought about data and has led him to view problems with a “more holistic approach using multiple perspectives.”

Nico is passionate about the sports in which he participates, both within and outside of the BHS community. Within BHS, he is one of the captains of the wrestling team. Outside of school, he has a purple belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and also helps to teach kids’ Jiu-Jitsu classes. In keeping with Nico’s wide range of interests, when asked to reflect on his time at BHS, he answered that he was most proud of “finding [his] own path” and “acting passionately rather than conforming.”

To other BHS students, Nico’s succinct advice is to “make the most of your time at BHS because it will end earlier than you think.”

By Claire Svetkey

Marauder of the Week: Friday, December 5th, 2019

Matt OConnell Vale

A well rounded student, Matt O’Connell-Vale is one of this week’s Marauders of the Week.

In school, Matt enjoys all of his classes, and has a passion for learning in general. However, science and math are especially interesting to him because of “their everyday applications to the world we live in.” Matt also enjoyed his acting class last year, and feels as though it has made a big impact on him. He’s proud of his academic record, having been on the high honor roll for all of his years at BHS, and receiving awards at school. As for his teachers, Matt feels as though all of them have helped him develop, instilling “something in me that I have taken with me through my time as a student.”

Outside of school, Matt has a variety of other interests, participating in several of the clubs at BHS. He is also a member of the Arlington-Belmont crew team and a board member of the Belmont Human Rights Commission, whose meetings he enjoys immensely. In addition, Matt says he can pogo stick with no hands - an unusual ability, for sure.

As words of advice to future Marauders, Matt says: “If you put the work in, there is nothing you can’t do. Also, just be yourself, that is how you will get the farthest in life.”

by Alice Liu

Emma Sutherland

As a student who is successful in academics and extracurriculars, and passionate about helping the community, Emma Sutherland is undoubtedly a great candidate for the Marauder of the Week.

Emma's interests in school are social studies and math, where she explains that social studies allows her to learn about how "different countries interact and human rights issues across the world," and that math is an essential "tool used in so many aspects of life." Emma's favorite class is Global Leadership taught by Dr. Shea, where she explores and discusses current events and complex issues in the world. Furthermore, Emma states the "class had changed how I viewed the world and made me a more conscious global citizen" and "confirmed my interest in majoring in International Relations."

Outside of school, Emma takes part in Cross County (where she received the Sportsmanship Award last year), Outdoor Track and Field, PAC, Model UN, National Honors Society, and PALS. She also coaches middle school basketball for community service and works at Mad Science on the weekends. However, Emma's passions lie in helping others and making a difference in the community, and making social change. From this, it is no surprise that Emma is most proud of the community service projects the PALS club has accomplished, where she is the club's president. Emma says that in the club, "high school students and special needs students work together to do community service projects." The club has done numerous projects—collecting Halloween candy to send to the troops overseas, buying holiday presents for underprivileged kids, planting flowers to give to a nursing home, making fleece blankets for an animal shelter, and making Valentine’s Day cards for kids in the hospital—all of which makes her "so proud to be part of a club that makes such a difference in our community."

As for words of wisdom to Belmont High students, Emma encourages everyone to "do what you're passionate about and step out of your comfort zone," reminding us all that life is about doing the things you love and taking risks.

by Tiffany Hu

Marauder of the Week: Friday, November 22nd, 2019

Paul Muser

Paul Muser is this week’s Marauder of the Week! A talented and personable senior, Paul is fluent in both English and French, and credits his Spanish teacher Ms. Talamas as someone who has impacted his worldview through her support in his learning of the language. Learning and then practicing increasingly more complex methods of writing and speaking Spanish, Paul says, allowed him to express his thoughts and feelings profoundly in a “whole new way”. Paul’s interests extend far beyond his aptitude for languages, as he is also extremely passionate about the research component in his English capstone project on the morality of gene editing, and he is thrilled at the prospect of sharing his work at the end of the year. In his free time, Paul has been hard at work developing a podcasting project called The Humble Podcasting Network, which he says has given him an outlet to express his thoughts and explore his passion for topics he may not often get the chance to dive into in school. He is also proud that his podcast is a platform for others to do the same, and his advice to underclassmen ties into his reasoning for founding it: follow your passion. There is a lot of pressure coming at you from all sides from as early as freshman year and it is often difficult and disorienting to navigate as an underclassman, but, Paul explains, stepping out of your initial comfort zone can lead to countless opportunities you otherwise would have never considered, and an easy way to start is to explore new activities “that you find fun and focus on those”. Check him out at and congratulations to Paul on his nomination!

by Elisabeth Pitts

Catherine Graves

Senior Catherine Graves is a girl whose cultivated mind and exceeding intellect are made evident after one greeting. She is especially interested in the humanities area of study. This includes social sciences like AP Psychology. In fact, she hopes to have a career in this field in the future so she can have a “positive impact on the world around [her].” One class that she looks back upon with great endearment is Ms. Mastalong’s AP European History. Ms. Mastalong’s skillful knowledge and utmost attention to her students’ well-being set her apart from other teachers, in Graves’s perspective. Among other things, Graves is part of the Belmontian Club. In fact, she is the special events coordinator, with Mrs. Melnikoff. This is her fourth year being part of the club and she loves being part of a group that does so much for our community. Last year, along with a subcommittee of the Belmontian, they were able to raise over $15,000 for the American Cancer Society's Making Strides Against Breast Cancer fundraiser. They received a plaque for placing first in the High School Challenge and gave a speech the day of the breast cancer walk. Graves also volunteers a lot outside of school. This includes helping out at the St. Stephens after school program, which is a non-profit that provides care and support to elementary students from the surrounding South Boston schools. She has been a part of this organization for four years and has seen some of the kids thrive and flourish under her care throughout those years. As if that’s not enough on her plate, she has also been part of the track team for three years and loves being in the team environment. Graves is especially passionate about her friends. She feels extremely fortunate for having such amazing, supportive people in her life whom she couldn’t imagine her life without. She also loves to explore new cultures and travel around to do so. Lastly, she has strong beliefs on protecting the environment. When asked what advice she would give to the underclassmen, she said something immensely true and sensible: she urged students to not take these four years for granted, as they go by so fast. We must make each day the best it can be. After all, what’s the point in doing otherwise?

by Ani Belorian

Marauder of the Week: Friday, November 15th, 2019

Aditi Khare

A kind and creative member of the Belmont High School community, Aditi Khare is definitely deserving of the title of Marauder of the Week. 

In school, Aditi enjoys classes that are rooted in critical thinking and creativity, but likes biology the most. She enjoys many of her classes this year, including Anatomy and Physiology, Calculus, French, and 3D Art. The teacher who she believes influences her the most is her current Calculus teacher, Mr. Moresco. Aditi feels as though he makes math “engaging and fun with his enthusiasm and humor,” making her Calculus class neither boring nor difficult.

Outside of school, Aditi participates in a variety of clubs – UNICEF, Art, and Cultural Appreciation – and is currently one of the leaders of the Cultural Appreciation Club. She’s especially proud of her involvement in UNICEF, and feels as though she has made an impact on the world through the club’s teach team. As a member for two years, Aditi has taught kids about important issues in the world and how organizations like UNICEF can help people in need. She also feels as though the club has a great sense of community, and has helped her talk to new people.

Aditi has a variety of other interests, such as music (she particularly likes the Arctic Monkeys), film, gaming, science, and the French language. Ethical and political debates are also interesting to Aditi, as she feels she can learn about the participants based on how they talk. 

As words of advice to current and future Belmont high school students, the ever optimistic Aditi says, “Your success in high school depends on making choices that are right for you… No matter what you do, as long as you are working hard and believe in yourself, you will be successful.” 

by Alice Liu

Matthew Fiore

A leader in school, Matthew Fiore embodies a true Marauder. Not only does he excel in school, Fiore also participates in after school activities such as the varsity baseball team and the Future Business Leaders of America club.

Fiore is a committed student whose current interests are in his advanced placement psychology and advanced placement economics classes. He explains that these subjects have exposed him to content he “hasn’t had a chance to explore before,” and that “the teachers help keep the class interesting and relatable” to his life. His favorite class, however, is the Global Leadership class taught by Dr. Shea, who he says helped him understand different influences on the world and his responsibility on global issues. When asked about his favorite aspects of the class, Fiore says, “We got to work on assignments that gave us a chance to learn about how food and clothing industries are more complex than we might think by living in America, as well as about topics like microfinance and entrepreneurship.” It is of no doubt that Fiore’s interests of these subjects stem from his enjoyable and rigorous classes as well as from his teachers. After school, Fiore exercises his skills and passion for business and leadership through one of his clubs, the Future Business Leaders of America. Fiore is one of the co-leaders of this club, and every spring he brings the students to participate in regional conferences. Fiore has received awards for the Business and Cybersecurity exam competitions. His passion for his classes and even his club shows just how dedicated he is towards his studies and extracurriculars.

During his years so far, Fiore has determined that the spring trip to Rome in 2019 was his favorite experience as a student at BHS. Along with Mr. Dunn, Mr. Loosmann, Ms. McCarthy, and the other students, Fiore experienced a different culture and learned more about both the historical and modern aspects of Rome. Although not all students will get to travel to Rome with their teachers and classmates, Fiore advises others to “take advantage of one of these trips if possible” and says that he is extremely grateful to have obtained this opportunity.

By Katherine Bai

Marauder of the Week: Friday, November 1st, 2019

Kripa Paudel

As the leader of the BHS Dance Club, an active volunteer, and someone who's always open to meeting new people and making friends, Kripa Paudel is unquestionably a deserving candidate for the Marauder of the Week.

In school, Kripa is interested in math and biology, for she believes that math is essential in one's life since it's "connected to so many things," and she loves to solve problems and give herself a challenge. As for biology, she enjoys how it allows her to learn new concepts and offers fascinating insight into herself and the environment around her. Of the classes she has taken at BHS, Kripa says that AP Economics with Mr. Striet was the class that has been the most influential to her. Kripa explains that the content of the class was very captivating, and it opened a new perspective for her into the world of economics. She loves the class so much that she's thinking about either double majoring or minoring in the subject.

Aside from academics, Kripa is part of the BHS Dance Club, where they do "different types of modern dances such as hip-hop along with step." Last year, they even won first place at Belmont Idol! Additionally, Kripa is passionate about helping others in the community. She says that through her experiences doing community service, she has been able to "realize the positive influence I can have in my environment and the world," inspiring her to continue helping throughout the community. From this, it is no surprise that Kripa is most proud of her volunteering at Nepali Class Boston (it's a Nepalese language school that teaches children and young adults the language and the culture of Nepal), where she helps new generations of Nepalese Americans "learn about their background and become more connected to their heritage and culture." Furthermore, the program has taught Kripa more about the value of collaboration and teamwork.

Finally, Kripa's words of wisdom are for the underclassmen to "enjoy their time in high school and live life to the fullest, because tomorrow isn't promised," recalling how her own four years in high school went by in a blink of an eye.

By: Tiffany Hu

Jenna Crowley

There is no doubt why senior Jenna Crowley was chosen for the Marauder of the Week. Not only is she successful in academics and extracurricular activities, Crowley is a dedicated member of the community. In school, Crowley is a student involved in rigorous classes. Outside of school, she participates in various sports and community services. 

Crowley’s favorite subject in school is zoology, where she says her teacher Ms. Williams makes the world around her much more intriguing. However, Crowley says that teacher Ms. McDevitt has been the most influential to her because she is the one Crowley relates to the most. Crowley says that “she is the kind of teacher that makes you look forward to class and was always positive.” Through her junior year, Ms. McDevitt always pushed Crowley to reach her potential and helped her when she was struggling.

After school, Crowley is a passionate athlete. She plays for the varsity volleyball, hockey, and softball team and is the assistant captain of the hockey team this year. Sports challenge her mental and physical strength, but they also are enjoyable opportunities for her to meet new people and cooperate in a team. 

As the Co-President of the Student Leadership Team, she helped set up the fundraiser “Serving for Soldiers” at her own volleyball game to raise money for the New England Center and Homes for Veterans. She says that giving back to the community is extremely important to her which is why she is part of such fundraisers. Crowley also sang the national anthem that night for the fundraiser, and she says that she has much love for music—specifically playing piano and singing. She is indeed a versatile student, with passions in many areas. 

Crowley says that in school she hopes students are kind to each other and take part in different activities, especially those that contribute to the community.

Congratulations on your nomination Jenna!

by Katherine Bai 

Marauder of the Week Gallery

Kate Devitt Grace Patrone  Abigail Yu  Soren Hallet  Vanessa Yuzlek  Christian Rudder  Merrie Chasse  Honor Hickman  Nico Noack  Matt OConnell Vale  Emma Sutherland  Paul Muser  Catherine Graves  Aditi Khare  Matthew Fiore  Kripa Paudel  Jenna Crowley