The Steinert High School Class of 2020 graduated in a virtual ceremony on June 17. Days earlier, Steinert finalized senior grade-point averages and announced which graduating seniors had the 10 highest GPAs.

Each member of the Top 10 filled out a questionnaire provided to them by the Hamilton Post. Their answers follow:

Madison Cortes

Madison Cortes

Class rank: 1   GPA: 4.9

College: Rutgers University

Intended career: Pediatrician

Sports: Freshman softball

Clubs: Color guard (captain), school newspaper (editor), Peer Leadership, Mock Trial, National Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, Spanish Club, Choir, school musical, SGA

Prior schooling: Sayen Elementary, Reynolds Middle

Teacher who inspired me: Mr. Leonardo, Mrs. Brown, Señora Gendek and Mr. Holcombe. I had Mr. Leonardo in third and fifth grade and he always saw the best in everyone and encouraged me to shoot for the stars. Mrs. Brown inspired me of my love for biology, while Señora Gendek encouraged me to embrace my Puerto Rican heritage through speaking Spanish. I met Mr. Holcombe during my senior year, and he was always there for his students, no matter what problem arose.

Favorite memory: Trip to Washington, D.C. with my GALRE class. It was a really fun and action-packed trip. I also enjoyed all of my marching unit memories, including the Disney World trip during my sophomore year. Some of my favorite moments in marching unit were during my senior year when I got to serve as a color guard captain.

 

Chris Burger

Chris Burger

Class rank: 2   GPA: 4.89

College: University of Maryland

Intended career: Mechanical engineer

Sports: Track

Clubs: Drumline, school musical, Mock Trial, Peer Leadership, Steinert’s Board of Education representative

Prior schooling: Morgan Elementary, Reynolds Middle

Teacher who inspired me: My pre-calculus and AP Calculus BC teacher, Mr. Ryan. Mr. Ryan has ignited my passion for learning and taught me its value, instilled good academic habits in me, gotten me to work my hardest but also be my most intellectually curious, and has been an outstanding role model both inside and outside the classroom. I am so thankful for everything he has done for me.

Favorite memory: This year’s school show, Newsies. I spent countless hours practicing with my friends and making memories. I also got to take on one of the lead roles, which I was honored by. The show was immensely successful, due to the outstanding talent and hardwork of the cast and crew. It felt like I was really a part of something special. I’m so thankful we were able to put on our show before remote learning started. I am sure it will be a very long time before Newsies is topped.

 

Patrick Kline

Patrick Kline

Class rank: 3   GPA: 4.88

College: Marist College

Intended career: Video game developer

Clubs: Steinert Marching Unit (4 years), Steinert Jazz Band (4 years), Steinert Musical Theater (3 years), Steinert Dungeons & Dragons Club

Prior schooling: Mercerville Elementary, Reynolds Middle

Teacher who inspired me: This is an impossible question because every one of my teachers, from kindergarten through 12th grade, has influenced me and helped me develop academically, artistically, and emotionally. Because both of my parents are teachers, I know how dedicated teachers are to their students.  Their work does not end with the school day and their support of students extends beyond the classroom. So, I want to thank ALL of my teachers for everything they have done for me these past 13 years.

Favorite memory: I will remember countless things from high school, but some of my favorite memories include our band trip to Disney World, all of our Jazz Band performances, performing in the school musicals, and creating “Scenes from a Calculus Classroom” with my friends.

 

Hannah Melkonich

Hannah Melkonich

Class rank: 4   GPA: 4.83

College: Villanova University

Intended career: Biostatistician

Sports: Tennis, spring track

Clubs: Key Club, Peer Leadership, Physics Club, National Honor Society, Science National Honor Society

Prior schooling: Langtree Elementary, Crockett Middle

Teacher who inspired me: It is hard to choose just one, but Mr. Sinkleris and Ms. Blew have been so supportive and they both helped me with the process of applying to colleges and becoming who I am today.

Favorite memory: This past season with the tennis team. Over four years I have become close with my teammates and have many memories with them.

 

Rebecca Wisser

Rebecca Wisser

Class rank: 5   GPA: 4.79

College: Rutgers University

Intended major: Biochemistry

Sports: Cross country, winter and spring track

Clubs: SGA, Key Club, Spanish Club, Physics Club, Hamilton N.E.W.S

Prior schooling: Yardville Elementary, Reynolds Middle

Teacher who inspired me: Mrs. Brown. She always had lessons planned and even scheduled time for us so that we could get some of the work done in class. It was an AP class so she assigned us a lot of work but also gave us time to complete all of the work. She was always interested in how our lives were with applying to colleges and how we were doing in our sports. She made time to get to know each of us in our small AP Biology class. Mrs. Brown made learning biology a lot easier and was always there for us. She brought our class together and made us all very close friends.

Favorite memory: Wacky races this year. It was so fun to cheer on my friends and win after four years. It was also so memorable when we stormed the court after winning and made me realize how much I will miss being with my friends everyday and school events like this one.

 

Noelle Muni

Noelle Muni

Class rank: 6   GPA: 4.79

College: Gettysburg College

Intended career: Publishing

Clubs: Color Guard (captain), Mock Trial (president), Peer Leadership, National Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, Girls Who Code, Spanish Club, Key Club, Mosaic, Garden Club, school musical

Prior schooling: Morgan Elementary, Reynolds Middle

Teacher who inspired me: Mr. Holcombe and Mr. Sinkleris. Not only did they help me become a better writer and reader, but they took the time to get to know their students and encourage me in ways that no teacher had before.

Favorite memory: Color Guard and the GALRE trip to Washington. Washington was the most packed three days I’ve ever experienced. I couldn’t have asked for a better trip or a better group of friends to do it with. Meanwhile, the Steinert Marching Unit was a community I’ll always be grateful to have been a part of. Being a member of this unit and the chance to be a leader shaped who I am today. While I made many memories, when asked my favorite, I always see the practices we had on cold October afternoons running the show “one more time.”

 

Joseph Vocaturo

Joseph Vocaturo

Class rank: 7   GPA: 4.78

College: Virginia Tech (Corps of Cadets)

Intended career: Aerospace engineer

Sports: Lacrosse

Clubs: Jazz Band, Eagle Scout

Prior schooling: Sayen Elementary, Reynolds Middle

Teacher who inspired me: Mr. Ketterer has been one of the most influential teachers, and a mentor and a friend, memories from band with him as our director will stay with me for a lifetime and he helped make me not only a better musician, but a leader and member of a team.

Favorite memory: One of my favorite memories from K-12 was winning best saxophones at State prelims in Jazz this year, we all worked so hard and it really paid off.

 

Luke Armstrong

Luke Armstrong

Class rank: 8   GPA: 4.78

College: James Madison University

Intended career: Music teacher

Clubs: Steinert Marching Unit (tuba), Steinert Jazz Band (bass trombone), Peer Leadership, German Club

Prior schooling: Yardville Elementary, Reynolds Middle

Teacher who inspired me: My music teachers, Dr. Costantino, Mr Anzuini, Mrs. Giunta, and Mr. Ketterer have all inspired me to pursue music and pushed me to work hard and challenge myself.

Favorite memory: Leading the band as Drum Major during my senior year and going all the way to states. It felt great seeing our hard work pay off and how we came together as a group to put on an amazing show.

 

Natalie Kozemchak

Natalie Kozemchak

Class rank: 9   GPA: 4.76

College: Temple University

Intended career: Data analyst

Sports: Softball, field hockey

Clubs: Spanish Club, Student Government Association

Prior schooling: Morgan Elementary, Reynolds Middle

Teacher who inspired me: Mr. Ryan, who was my pre-calculus and calculus teacher, has been the most influential teacher for me because he taught me not to give up when things got challenging and helped me become a better student.

Favorite memory: Going on the Marine Biology trip to Key Largo my senior year.

 

Julia McCarty

Julia McCarty

Class rank: 10   GPA: 4.76

College: College of New Jersey

Intended career: Elementary school teacher

Sports: Cheerleading (captain), spring track

Clubs: Spanish Club, Key Club, National Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, National Art Honor Society

Prior schooling: Morgan Elementary, Reynolds Middle

Teacher who inspired me: I’ve had so many influential teachers over the years it would be impossible to choose only one. A few that have stood out to me the most would have to be Ms. Blew, Señora Gendek, and Mr. Freeman. They have all not only inspired my desire to learn, but their positive attitudes and genuine personalities are truly something I admire.

Favorite memory: Grand Champions at the annual CVC cheer competition. It was the happiest moment of my life. All the countless hours of hard work and dedication that my teammates and I had put in over the past 4 years truly paid off. Winning that title with such an incredible group of girls is truly something I’ll take with me for the rest of my life.