Jerry Varghese

Jerry Varghese

Governor’s School

Bethel Park High School junior Jerry Varghese was one of 60 Pennsylvania high school students who were accepted to attend the prestigious Pennsylvania Governor’s School for the Sciences, which will be held July 1-Aug. 4 at Carnegie Mellon University.

This program is an ungraded summer enrichment experience in the sciences and mathematics for talented Pennsylvania High School students, to encourage them to pursue careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering or mathematics.

The program provides instruction in biological sciences, chemistry, physics, mathematics and computer science, with an emphasis on collaborative learning and team research.

USC top finishers

Two Upper St. Clair teams were among the top finishers at the regional America Bowl on Feb. 2, at Baldwin High School.

A team of Boyce Middle School students finished first in the 3-5 division. Team members include Jamie Barrett, Lou Gargani, Rohan Mehta and Yuhong Shi. Fort Couch Middle School seventh graders – Ethan Anderson, Qadir Khan, Jack Miller and Ben Wasson – placed second in the 6-8 division.

Students answered individual and team questions from categories that included Presidents, Famous People, Pittsburgh History, U.S. States, Physical Map/Things to See, and U.S. Government.

Members of the top three teams in each division, 3-5 and 6-8, received an America Bowl T-shirt.

They included: Middle School (6-8) – 1. Brentwood Middle School, 2. USC Fort Couch Middle School, 3. South Park Middle School; Elementary (3-5) – 1. USC Boyce Middle School, 2. Moon Area Elementary, 3. St. Phillip Elementary

Elementary registration

St. Elizabeth Elementary School in Pleasant Hills is accepting registrations for Kindergarten and grades 1-8. Before and after school care is available. For more information, call the school office at 412-881-2958.

Odyssey teams advance

Of the 19 Upper St. Clair teams that competed in the Odyssey of the Mind Regional Tournament, six teams qualified to advance to the state competition held April 7 in the Poconos.

At the regional tournament, three Upper St. Clair teams placed first in their division and problem; one team placed second; and two placed third. The advancing teams are comprised of students from all building levels including two teams from the high school; one team from Fort Couch Middle School; two teams from Boyce Middle School; and one elementary team with students from Streams and Eisenhower.

The students were coached by Laura Murtough, Odyssey of the Mind program co-coordinator.

First Place:

• Performance Problem, Division I (Boyce): Eva Dubreil, Komel Nulwala, Michael Conte, Anushka Sharma, Pritika Gupta, George Abdel-Messih and Benjamin Ross, coached by Nulwala and Neelum Sharma

• 1st Place, Technical Problem, Division I (Boyce): Esha Lathia, Anastasia Gzikowski, Ben Murtough, Owen Mucho, Jake Casares, Ben Seewald and Peter Markovitz, coached by Stacey Seewald, Meridith Markovitz and Laura Murtough

• 1st Place, Vehicle Problem, Division III (USC High School): Christina Conte, Vivek Babu, Jacob Conte, Maggie Lowden, Isabella Putorti and Gracie Lowden, coached by Rachel Lowden and Beatrice Conte

Second Place:

• Classics Problem, Division III (USC High School): Sammie Seewald, Max Murtough, Victoria Cuba, Brianna Lin, Joseph Markovitz, Eric Wang, Constantine Tripodes, coached by Laura Murtough, Meridith Markovitz and Stacey Seewald

Third Place:

• Performance Problem, Division I (Streams & Eisenhower): Ellie Simons, Geneva Eisinger, Lily Simons, Lauren Ginsburg, Addie Young, Kurt Baran and Collin Rosenberg, coached by Simon Rosenberg, Nate Eisinger and Artie Baran

• Classics Problem, Division II (Fort Couch): Cameron Coller, Rosemary Ramirez, Josilyn Seftchick, Lindsay Ross, Jack Lowden, Cameron Weber and Mariam Abdel-Messih, coached by Kurt Weber and Mike Ross

The Western Pennsylvania Odyssey of the Mind regional tournament was held March 3, at Moon Area High School. Teams that finished first or second at the state-level competition on April 7 qualified for the Odyssey of the Mind World Finals held May 23-26 at Iowa State University.

Nat’l Merit Finalists

Ten Upper St. Clair High School seniors were named Finalists in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Program. Steven Cheung, Ariana Chiu, Nadith Dharmasena, Sahil Doshi, Jagadeesh Gummadi, Michael Hrehocik, Caroline LeKachman, Spencer Miller, Daniel Speer and Abigail Wagner were selected on the basis of their SAT scores, grades, essays and letters of recommendation.

In September 2017, these Upper St. Clair students were named Semifinalists in the competition for scoring in the top 1 percent of all juniors completing the PSAT in October 2016.

“Achieving National Merit Finalist status is an enormous feat for a high school student,” Dr. Louis Angelo, Upper St. Clair High School principal, said. “As juniors, they scored among the top one percent in the nation.”

As Finalists, the Upper St. Clair seniors are now competing for National Merit Scholarships that will be offered and announced this spring. The program awards three types of scholarships: National Merit $2,500 Scholarships, Corporate-Sponsored Merit Scholarships and College-Sponsored Merit Scholarships.

BP DECA finalists

Thirty-nine Bethel Park High School students were named Finalists at the 2018 Pennsylvania DECA State Career Development Conference, held Feb. 21-23 in Hershey. Of the 39 Finalists, 28 of them qualified to compete at the 2018 DECA International Career Development Conference, which was held this month in Atlanta.

Earning First Place Awards and qualifying for the International event were seniors Abby DelBene, Emma Harris and Camryn Manko in the Learn and Earn Project; Audra Kozlowski (Start Up Business Plan); Emma Beck, Gavin Campbell and junior Tyler Andres (Independent Business Plan); senior Tammy Stugan and juniors Dalton Moore and Tim Nuss (Creative Marketing Plan); juniors Alyssa George (Restaurant and Food Service Management); Samantha Huwe and Brenna Manko (Community Service Project); sophomore Gabby Hegedus (Buying and Merchandising Operations Research); and freshmen Michael Conroy and Lexi Seese (Entrepreneurship Innovation Plan).

Earning Second Place Awards and qualifying for Internationals were seniors Greydon Tomkowitz (Human Resources Management); Maria Schiller and Delaney Strzyz (Financial Literacy Promotion Plan); Rachel Gilliam and sophomore Sarah Gilliam (Advertising Campaign); and juniors Diana Brueggman (Business Growth Plan) and Alexis Schank (Hospitality and Tourism Operations Research).

Earning Third Place Awards and qualifying for Internationals were seniors Chelsea Hallman (Entrepreneurship) and Samantha Dunn (Quick Serve Restaurant Management) and juniors Lance Chorney and Alex Duguid (Sports and Entertainment Promotion Plan); and Ciara Roach (Franchise Business Plan). Senior Paige Davidson also earned a Third Place Award in the Female Model event.

Sophomore Jacob Marzina earned a Fourth Place Award in the Financial Consulting Event and qualified for Internationals.

Fifth Place Awards went to senior Karlie Olson (Hospitality and Tourism Professional Selling); junior Emily Kraska and sophomore Lauren Mazzacone (Sports and Entertainment Operations Research); and sophomores Brian Torles (Principles of Business Management); Shayna Postler and Rainy Swogger (Financial Operations Research); and Marissa Christenson, Riley Evans and Alyssa Sholder (Public Relations Plan).

Twelve students earned Medallion Awards for earning one of the top three scores in their event for either their Test, Role Play A and/or Role Play B. Earning Medallion Awards were senior Cameron Busch (Logistics Test and Role Play B); Abigail Coltz (Hotel and Lodging Management Test); Paige Davidson and Valerie Wengryn (Business Law and Ethics Role Play); Samantha Dunn (Quick Serve Restaurant Management Role Play B); Greydon Tomkowitz (Human Resources Management Test and Role Play A); Rachel Gilliam and sophomore Sarah Gilliam (Advertising Campaign Test); juniors Alyssa George (Restaurant and Food Service Management Test and Role Play A); Connor Price (Food Marketing Role Play A and Role Play B); sophomore Brian Torles (Principles of Business Management Role Play B) and freshman Dan DelBene (Sports and Entertainment Role Play A).

Junior Alexis Schanck was elected to serve as the District 3 Representative for the 2018-2019 school year, and seniors Paige Davidson and Valerie Wengryn were selected to serve as Voting Delegates at the International Career Development Conference, voting for the next President and North Atlantic Region Vice President. They will also be serving as Alternates in the Business Law and Ethics Team Event.

Scholarships were presented to seniors Paige Davidson (PA DECA Student of the Year Scholarship and PA DECA Scholarship) and Sabrina Tatalias (PA DECA Scholarship).

Bethel Park High School Marketing Teacher Emily Smoller was named the 2018 DECA Adviser of the Year. She has been the Bethel Park High School DECA’s Adviser for the past 11 years.

The students were prepared for this competition by Bethel Park High School Marketing Teachers Emily Smoller, Maria Christenson, Linda Broderick and Karrie Kinzel.

10th in the world

The third-grade classes from Saint Elizabeth Elementary School in Pleasant Hills competed in World Maths Day on March 7. The students placed 10th in the world in math, with only the top 100 schools recognized officially. World Maths Day is the largest online math competition in the world. It is hosted by the online math engine Live Mathletics, which is used by over 4 million students worldwide, including students at St. Elizabeth Elementary. The competition measures speed in arithmetic and mathematical literacy skills on the Live Mathletics website.

The students competed in math exercises online, with other national and international students. They were required to complete 20 math games within their appropriate grade level, each game lasting 60 seconds. The third-graders themselves were proud of their 10th place finish and their international success. One student noted that he was competing against children from Great Britain, India and Pakistan, but, the most fun he had, was competing with his own classmates.

In addition to testing math skills, the students simultaneously raised money for UNICEF through the competition. Every question answered correctly earned points, which were then converted into a cash value. The money is then donated to fund and support UNICEF schools and UNICEF projects in underdeveloped areas.

The third-grade students are taught by Mrs. Mary Beth Baumgardner and Mrs. Lee Engel, both of whom have dedicated their teaching careers to the students at St. Elizabeth Elementary.

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