Class of 2013 Valedictorian
With a weighted GPA of 107.286, Rebecca Monastero edged ahead of 292 students to be the Class of 2013 Valedictorian.
Although humble in the spotlight of publicity, Rebecca has often risen in the headlines for her significant scientific accomplishments as a Sayville R.I.S.E. student. Her research on the Interactions of Mercury and Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Avid Seafood Consumers, conducted this past summer as a Simons Fellow at Stony Brook University under the mentorship of Dr. Jaymie Meliker, earned her a spot as one of the 53 Long Island science students named from among the 300 national semifinalists in the Intel Science Talent Search this fall. It also won her a top 10 finalist position in the Neuroscience Research Prize by the American Academy of Neurology.
For such an illustrious high school career, Rebecca was recently honored with the Outstanding Senior Science Student by the Suffolk County Science Teachers Association of New York State.
Beyond her extraordinary years of dedication on numerous and noteworthy scientific studies, beyond her stellar academic numbers and rank, however, is an amazing, well-rounded young lady who comprises diverse talents and who has captured the admiration of her peers, as well as the High School community.
In addition to the rigorous five AP courses she has taken this year, Rebecca still pursues outside hours as a Youth Squad Member of the Sayville Community Ambulance Company and participates as treasurer for both the High School Student Government and the Anchor Club (for which she earned the Distinguished Service Award).
She has trained and performed in ballet and lyrical dance recitals, and is a member of the Sayville Girls Varsity Golf team. A talented vocalist and violinist, Rebecca has competed in the SCMEA festival, NYSSMA and All-State, for which she has garnered NYSCAME Acceptance, NYSSMA and All-State honors. Not just a performer, however, Rebecca is an outstanding service member of Tri-M Music Honor Society, High School String Ensemble for which she also earned the Tri-M Outstanding Service Award as a Junior for fulfilling over forty hours of service.
“Her motivation and achievements have been exceptional, over the four years that I have worked with her,” acknowledged Research teacher Maria Brown, “but her humbleness, sincerity, and willingness to help others have touched my life and the lives of many others on numerous levels. I must say, she is truly a joy to teach and engage with in eclectic discussions. She is always upbeat, and other students and faculty truly enjoy being around her.”
Service to others in a variety of disciplines has been the constant in Rebecca’s life, and with remarkable maturity she will focus on her greatest passion; “I cannot imagine anything more motivating than life as a physician.” Her future patients will be extremely fortunate.
Next fall, Rebecca will be attending Stony Brook’s Woman in Science & Engineering’s Direct Med Program on scholarships. This eight-year program interviews only thirty-four candidates from a nationwide application process and selects only an elite eight students. This is where, Rebecca—one of the eight—will begin her amazing destiny.