Rachel Roday has jammed as much as she could into the last four years. The Huntington High School senior is a high achiever with enormous energy and enthusiasm. She will graduate near the top of the Class of 2017.
Ms. Roday is headed to the University of Delaware in the fall. She has been accepted into the school’s honors program. “I am pursuing a major in marine science with a concentration in marine biology,” the senior said. “I hope to also earn a minor in economics. I plan to be a marine biologist or marine conservationist after completing a masters and, hopefully, a doctorate in my field.”
Rather than coasting through her senior year, Ms. Roday instead opted to pursue a challenging set of courses. The classes include Advanced Placement Macroeconomics, AP Microeconomics, AP Literature and Composition, AP Physics, AP Calculus AB, Science Research, Music Theory and Senior Band. She also interned with the science research program’s teachers.
“The best moments at Huntington High School were shared with my friends,” Ms. Roday said. “Most of my favorite memories were formed during the marching band season from August to October. During the fall, my 120-something peers in the band program became a second family. Some of the best moments with the marching band included winning first place in the New York State Field Band Conference’s Large School Three Division, marching down Main Street at Disney World and serving as the band’s drum major this past year with my best friend, Anjali Kapur.”
Huntington senior Rachel Roday.
The teenager’s favorite classes have been Advanced Placement Biology with teacher Deborah Beck and AP Macro/Microeconomics with social studies teacher James Graber.
Ms. Roday helped found Huntington High School’s wildly successful Environmental Club, serving as its co-president this year. She’s been a member of the Envirothon team in each of the past four years and captained the squad as a junior and senior. The teenager was also on the Quiz Bowl team for four years and was on the Science Bowl squad this year.
“Being part of the Envirothon team was another highlight of my time at Huntington High School,” Ms. Roday said. “The other five members of the team became some of my closest friends and I will never forget the amazing experiences we shared together.”
A wonderful musician, Ms. Roday plays clarinet exceptionally well. A four year member of the Huntington Blue Devil marching band, she was its drum major in each of the past two years. She’s been in the junior and senior bands, the wind ensemble and the spring musical’s pit orchestra.
“Marching band was an integral part of my high school experience so I would be nowhere without the guidance and support of Ms. [Jessica] Castaneda, Mr. [Jason] Giachetti and Mr. [Brian] Stellato. These three amazing teachers pushed me to be a better musician, student and overall person. I was lucky to have been able to spend so much time with teachers that love their job and who truly care about their students.”
President of Huntington’s National Science Honor Society chapter, Ms. Roday is also a member of the National Honor Society as well as the Tri-M, Social Studies, Math and English Honor Societies.
“Through the SEARCH and science research programs, Mrs. [Maryann] Daly and Mrs. [Lori] Kenny helped me realize my passion in life: science,” Ms. Roday said. “As a young student, Mrs. Daly inspired curiosity and made learning fun. She taught me to ask questions, think outside the box and never give up. During my four years as Mrs. Kenny’s student, I was able to apply this mindset to the research projects that I conducted. Mrs. Kenny helped me grow as a person and develop into a young scientist. I am so grateful for the unique experiences and rare opportunities that she was able to provide for me.”
The teenager is one of those rare individuals of any age that’s able to juggle numerous time consuming commitments at the same time and notch notable achievements in every area.
“Inside the classroom, Ms. [Camille] Tedeschi helped me become a better writer and more thorough student. However, it was outside the classroom that she made the most impact. I was able to travel to Costa Rica and the Galapagos Islands with Ms. Tedeschi; two unforgettable experiences that I will cherish for the rest of my life. I hope one day to be able to travel and enjoy life just as much as Ms. Tedeschi.”
As she prepares to leave Huntington High School and move on to college, Ms. Roday is willing to share some sage advice with the hundreds of students that will replace the departing Class of 2017 in the building next September.
“Even though school is about education, don’t worry too much about grades,” Ms. Roday advises incoming Huntington freshmen. “Getting caught up in the stress of school can ruin your entire experience. Learn to enjoy the small moments with your friends in between the hours of homework and definitely join as many clubs as possible. You’d never imagine how many friends you could make outside of your grade level if you just join one extracurricular.”