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April School Highlights
Academy of Allied Health & Biomedical Sciences
- Woodbridge Academy completed its NJSLA ELA testing on April 9, 10, and 11 and math testing on April 16 and 17. Guidance counselor Katie Elko served as testing coordinator.
- The Whole School, Whole Child, Whole Community Wellness Grant fifth monthly wellness and stress relief day was held April 12 and offered students and staff a chance to decompress after three days of state testing.
- Three talented musicians from Woodbridge Academy provided musical entertainment at the MCVTS Advisory Dinner on April 11 at the Piscataway Campus. Spruha Ravikumar played the violin during appetizers and socializing time. Sophomores Samantha Tong and Antonio Idioma took turns playing the keyboard as guests entered the main hall and then played throughout dinner and dessert. Again, guests were surprised to find that Antonio could handle the requests for Dave Brubeck and Louie Armstrong. In addition, the first- and second-place teams from the Tech Expo participated in sharing their winning projects.
- The senior class trip to Frost Valley YMCA camp was on April 17. The trip was organized by the Senior Class Council and advisor Rafael Nava.
- The Red Cross Club held its Spring Blood Drive on April 17. Twenty-five units of blood were collected and “Game of Thrones” posters were handed out to participants.
- The softball teams began the season strong. Varsity’s record after three weeks was 6 and 3 and JV’s was 3 and 1.
- Freshmen Rebecca Xu won a $500 scholarship from America’s ToothFairy Project. Rebecca entered a contest to help improve children’s oral health in the community. Rebecca wrote a 250-word essay describing a creative solution: She will distribute 250 toothbrushes, provided by America’s ToothFairy, to ice cream shops. The marketing will be to enjoy ice cream during the summer but not at the expense of your teeth.
- Two teams from the Academy competed in the Rutgers Oncology Olympiad over the weekend of April 6-7. The team of juniors Akul Umamageswaran, Darshan Patel, Emily Zarczynski, and Nina Chereath won third overall out of 23 teams from throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The team also won an individual event. Woodbridge Academy’s other team, sophomore Adam Tseng and juniors Rithvik Ghankot and Soumya Vavilala, won an event for a skin cancer lab report.
- Freshman Thvisha Masireddy is a finalist in the “Shout Down Drugs” competition. Her original song is on the shoutdowndrugs.com/contestants website, where the public can vote to advance her. She is scheduled to perform at the Annual Statewide Prevention Concert. Her song, “No, No” is an acapella that was inspired by the desire to decrease drug usage at John F. Kennedy Memorial High School.
- Twenty Woodbridge Academy scholars have been selected for National Merit Scholarship recognition for 2019-2020. The juniors are Regina Cheung, Sahil Desai, Rithvik Ghankot, Vighnesh Ginde, Divya Konduru, Stuti Mohan, Nitin Nazeer, Sarah Paladino, Neel Panchwagh, Virali Patel, Spruha Ravikumar, Ruchi Shah, Shreya Sridhar, Sukruthi Reddy Thunga, Chanpreet Toor, Akul Umamageswaran, Yukti Ummaneni, Soumya Vavilala, Namya Vemula and Ahnaf Zaman. These student represent one-third of the junior class.
- Senior Dayashree Baskaran was honored on April 9 at the Middlesex County Secondary Principals and Supervisors Association Outstanding Student Banquet at the NJFEA/NJPSA headquarters in Monroe. Dayashree is a remarkable young scholar whose achievements in the classroom, service in the community, and concern for others are rarely seen in one her age. She is an active member of the school’s Interact Club and the co-executive of the Amnesty International Club. Outside of school, Dayashree works with the Ozanam Family Shelter, participates in academic competitions, and teaches dance to the youngest children at her dance studio. She never arrives at school without a beaming smile and a positive outlook, and maintains a weighted 4.6 grade-point average. She plans to work in health science or neuroscience so she can assist patients during illness and recovery and also use the health care platform to advance medical care options for members of minority communities in society.
- Three Woodbridge Academy freshmen competed in the Muslim Interscholastic Tournament the first weekend of April. Ayra Ajay took third place for improvisational speaking and in Math Olympiad. Aqsa Owais placed third for writing short fiction. Aysha Syeda placed first in knowledge tests. Aysha and Aqsa placed third in debate. The tournament is designed to bring Muslim and non-Muslim students together to promote peace and understanding. The girls advanced to nationals.
- The Safety Ambassadors traveled to Ross Street Elementary School on April 12 to deliver the last of the safety instruction for the year.
- Spirit Day was held on April 17 and the theme was Career Day. Over 150 students wore scrubs to work that day. Between Career Day and the Blood Drive, the Academy seemed to be transformed into a healthcare facility. The sophomores won the spirit points with 100 percent participation.
- Students wore blue and had morning and lunch announcements to raise awareness about Autism Spectrum Disorder on April 2, World Autism Awareness Day.
Academy for Science, Mathematics, & Engineering Technologies
- Middle School students from around New Jersey are competing in our first-ever MCA Math Competition. Math League and Math Games arranged this amazing event. Big thanks to Ms. Gomes, Ms. Southern and Mr. Mosaad for your hard work to help make this happen.
- Academy Interact Club students Ariana Novo (senior), Pramod Mitikiri (junior) and Ryan Shah (junior) joined Rotarians and Interact Clubs from across New Jersey to help package meals that will be distributed to food banks across the state. Over 100,000 meals were packaged at this event.
- Congratulations to Hannah Daniel and Joanna Samuel for being selected as Senior Students of the Month for May. Big thanks to the Edison Rotary for sponsoring these recognition breakfasts and Ms. Simmons for coordinating the selection of our students each month.
- JSA-Spring State was a success. Congrats to our very own Mid-Atlantic state lieutenant governor, Avaneen. Sophomores Kaitlyn F. and William Yu won best speaker awards (gavels) for their debates. Thanks to Mr. Price and Mr. Fernandez for supporting our JSA chapter.
- Safety Ambassadors taught Safety on Road/Crosswalks/Stairs/Wheeled Sports and Using Helmets. Safety Ambassadors is sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Trauma Center.
- Close to 600 pounds of food donated by our staff and students to MCFOODS to help families in Middlesex County who experience food insecurity. The freshmen (Class of 2022) are the winners of the food drive and the pizza party.
- Congratulations Saneel Sreeni for receiving the Outstanding Student Award given at the Middlesex County Secondary Principals Association Banquet at the Foundation for Educational Administration.
- Members of the Computer Science Club who helped invent F.R.A.T. (Frame Rate Authentication Tool) presented the device to the MCVTS Board of Education. They discussed the history of how/why it was created with the help of Detective Epstein of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office. A provisional patent has been awarded and the team will compete in STEAM Tank at the state level in Atlantic City.
- The "Dare to be Great" Challenge Competition for Interact Clubs was sponsored by the Italian Diplomatic Academy, Rotary International and United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The winning team will travel to present their idea at an international conference in Dubai or South America.
- Ethan Lee and Thomas Weatherbee received second place in coding at the 2019 NJTSA High School State Conference.
- The Academy’s National Honor Society trip to New York City with NHS advisors John Ocker and Rosemary Simmons was a fun day at the American Museum of Natural History, Planetarium and IMAX theatre.
- Amey Venkatanarayan, Vignesh Kumar and Vineeth Vajipey were selected as Senior Students of the Month for May. Thank you to the Edison Rotary for celebrating our students. Thanks to Ms. Simmons for coordinating the selections and Mr. Fernandez for attending.
East Brunswick Campus
- Libitz, Digital Film instructor, has been selected as an official Google for Education Certified Trainer.
- The results from the East Brunswick Campus’ fifth View-Master Photography Competition are in. Emily Arce (first place), Melia Velez (second place), Emily Ortiz (third place), and Sammy Horan (Jury’s Choice Award) were selected as this year’s winners.
- The results from the East Brunswick Campus’ fourth Filminute One-minute Film Competition are in. Nidhi Patel and Maria Martinez (first place), Noah Perez (second place), Melia Velez (third place), and Amanda Clark (Jury’s Choice Award) were selected as this year’s winners.
- Four students were chosen for inclusion in the 2019 Congressional Art Competition. Eleanor Englert (Graphic Design), Yasmine Khanna (Multimedia Art and Design), Dasan Kelton (Multimedia Art and Design), and Samantha Oliveira (Multimedia Art and Design) received honorable mention honors for their submitted artwork.
- The East Brunswick Campus received the Overall Sportsmanship Award for the Greater Middlesex Conference Gold Division.
- At the April 13 SkillsUSA state conference and awards ceremony, the East Brunswick Campus brought home 10 gold medals, two silver medals, and a bronze medal, and the East Brunswick chapter was recognized as Model of Excellence winner in the Workplace Skills category and a Gold Chapter of Distinction for the state of New Jersey. This Model of Excellence award is only given to 24 chapters nationally each year. Natalia Metz (bronze, Commercial Baking), Aidan DeLuca (silver, Technical Drafting), Mia Ortiz and Waldy Rodriguez (silver, Additive Manufacturing), Destiny Castillo and Patrycja Sliwowska (gold, State Banner Design), Joe Temenski (gold, Basic Masonry), Carlos Cruz, Steven Marcucci and Jesse Truminski (gold, Engineering Technology Design), Emily Soden (gold, Architectural Drafting), Lindsey Kuhlthau and Christina Rivera (gold, Wedding Cake Decorating), and Valerie Urbaez (gold, T-Shirt Design) were the student award recipients.
- Amanda Clark, senior Digital Film student, was this year’s Middlesex County Secondary Principals Association Outstanding Student selection for the East Brunswick Campus.
East Brunswick School of Career Development
- Roth’s Culinary Arts students competed in a two-month “Tiger Chef” mystery box challenge. The students went head to head in battle until only two remained. Ana Tavarez and Britney Baril faced off in the finale with a team of four students assisting them. They were given a mystery box with 25 ingredients with which they had to produce four plates each of a salad course, entrée with starch and vegetable and finally a dessert. They were judged on originality, presentation and taste. After all the votes were tabulated, Ana and Britney tied with a score of 88.33 (out of 100).
- Betancourt’s Spanish II class collaborated and did an extensive research on the Culture of Peru, prepared videos and slide shows, and presented on the following: History, Timeline, Culture, Cuzco, Machu Pichu and animals of the region, soccer and extreme sports, differences between 3 regions of Peru, dance, instruments and typical clothing for folk dances, Lima, Nazca Lines, Paracas, unresolved mysteries, food, authors, poets, and famous people.
- In March and April, the East Brunswick Technical School and Career Development participated in the State Conference for Skills USA. The following are our results (42 students competed): Natalia Metz: bronze, Commercial Baking, Graphic Design shop; Aidan DeLuca: silver, Technical Drafting, CAD shop; Mia Ortiz and Waldy Rodriguez: silver, Additive Manufacturing, CAD shop; Destiny Castillo and Patrycja Sliwowska, gold, State Banner Design, Graphic Design shop; Joe Temenski, gold, Basic Masonry, Building Services shop; Carlos Cruz, Steven Marcucci, and Jesse Truminski: gold, Engineering Technology Design, CAD shop; Emily Soden, gold, Architectural Drafting, CAD shop; Lindsey Kuhlthau and Christina Rivera: gold, Wedding Cake Decorating, Baking shop; Valerie Urbaez: gold, T-Shirt Design, Graphic Design shop.
Perth Amboy Campus
- The Perth Amboy Campus had 16 students participate in this year’s NJSkillsUSA competition which was held on multiple weekends in March and April. Tenth-grade Computer Systems Technology student Krzysztof Grochal won a silver medal in the Information Technology Services contest; 10th-grade Computer Systems Technology student Alexandra Trujillo won a silver medal in the Technical Computer contest; 10th-grade Culinary Arts students Gabriella Bartlett, Tyree Hutchins, Navneet Kaur, and Keving Negro placed sixth in the Entrepreneurship contest; 11th-grade Culinary Arts students Izabella Acevedo and Hannah Cotayo placed fourth in the Wedding Cake Decorating contest; 10th-grade Computer Systems Technology student Precious Mendez placed sixth in the Computer Applications contest; 10th-grade Computer Systems Technology students Edwin Espinal and Jonaishia Freeman placed sixth in the We Design competition.
- Culinary Arts 10th- and 11th-grade students assisted Raritan Bay Medical Center in the opening of their Community Gardens on April 24. The students walked to the hospital and helped to weed the gardens and turn over the soil to begin the spring planting season.
- On April 5, the Practical Nursing faculty and clinical instructors received training on two newly installed KbPort Medication Carts. These carts combine medication dispersion with software that simulates electronic medical records to give the nursing students a more complete, realistic clinical simulation experience. This provides nurse educators with the ability to train nursing students on the existing technology for medication administration allowing repetition with no patient risk. These workstations include a barcode scanner and printer, USB keyboard and mouse with lockable doors and drawers with sample formulary. The software allows each simulation to start as it would in a real medical situation with admission reporting, lab work, and physician orders. There are also tools to create unfolding case studies to develop and manage patients in a more realistic way.
- On April 13, junior culinary students Juan Chambers and Chelby Boston competed in a Skills USA challenge. This was their first time competing in a competition representing Piscataway Vo-Tech. With hard work, dedication and creative skills they entered this competition not knowing what their challenge was. A mystery basket was set before them to work with and at the end of their competition they received medals for second place.
- On April 13, junior Automotive Collision student Alan Rodriguez-Sorto won first place in the Automotive Refinishing competition for Skills USA. Alan won a $10,000 scholarship and has the opportunity to compete in nationals in June.
- On April 10, 25 juniors had the opportunity to tour Kean University and learn about the many degrees offered. Students toured the Nancy Thompson Library, Miron Student Center Dining Hall, Harwood Arena, the new freshman dorm and the Student Services Building.
- On April 9, Katheryn Cardenas, senior in Computer Assisted Drafting and Design, received the Outstand Student Award given by the Middlesex County Principals and Supervisors Association. Katheryn will be attending Middlesex County College in the fall as an NJSTAR, and the New Jersey Institute of Technology in the spring majoring in civil engineering.
- On April 1, the Safety Ambassadors visited Randolphville Elementary School to educate first-grade students on being safe on the playground, around cars and in the street.
- On April 16, the Johnson and Johnson Leadership Group met and learned about unconscious bias. They spoke about how it impacts their lives and how they can change their views for the future.
- Leading up to the Advisory Dinner, Mr. Sadowski’s Horticulture students perfected and demonstrated their skills by making flower baskets and centerpieces for the occasion. They freshened up the courtyards by planting perennials in the planter boxes and planted annuals in the front atrium. Above all, we were able to recycle the centerpieces by donating them to a senior living home in Somerset.
- On April 17, Piscataway Campus celebrated Take Your Child to Work Day. It was a full team effort as our campus hosted 19 children of staff members. Ms. Griffin planned physical education activities, Ms. Rastelli’s culinary shop made pizzas with the children, Ms. Grieco’s students decorated cookies, Mr. Sadowski’s Horticulture students and Mr. Wiater’s Carpentry students contributed by making centerpieces and planting flowers, Ms. Champagne made slime, and Ms. Fernandes, Ms. Hatipoglu, and Ms. Roy planned craft activities for the children.
- On April 18, Piscataway Campus hosted their annual Career Technical Education luncheon. Over 70 students who are currently employed and their employers attended.