Hundreds of high school seniors from across Miami-Dade and Broward counties attended the 57th annual Silver Knights ceremony Wednesday night at the James L. Knight Center in Miami.
The awards, given by the Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald, honor outstanding high school seniors at Miami-Dade and Broward public and private schools. The schools nominate hundreds of seniors for the 15 academic categories of awards. A panel of judges picks winners in each category, along with three honorable mentions per category.
The students who earned the honorable mention accolades were impressive, such as Neha Saini, a Speech honorable mention recipient from Miramar High School, who took her project abroad through Educate Namibia. When Neha found out that students in Namibia, a country in South Africa, didn’t have any extracurriculars after school, she decided to step in and make a difference in a community thousands of miles away.
Through multiple fundraisers, Neha raised more than $1,000 and was able to send kids jerseys and build a netball court in Namibia.
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“The kids didn’t have anything to do after school and instead got into things that would have an adverse effect on them,” Neha said.
While she was helping these students find a niche outside of school, Neha was also excelling in school. An AP Scholar with Honor, Neha will attend the University of Florida in the fall.
Commended for their balance of altruism and academic success, 15 winners and 45 honorable mentions from Broward received The Miami Herald/El Nuevo Herald Silver Knight Award.
Here, then, are the Broward County Honorable Mentions for the 2015 Silver Knight Awards:
Art: Phoebe Gould, North Broward Preparatory School; Lindsay Raham, J.P. Taravella High School; Leah Ramsaran, American Heritage School.
Athletics: Scott Gringauz, North Broward Preparatory School; Rachelle Jillson, Archbishop Edward A. McCarthy High School; Adam Jurko, The Sagemont School.
Business: Tiffany Brazer, Western High School; Elizabeth Claire Carsello, Saint Thomas Aquinas High School; Adriana Brie-Ann Gray, Coral Glades High School.
Digital and Interactive Media: Grant Besner, University School of Nova Southeastern University; Pablo Sebastian Damonte, Somerset Academy Charter High; Kelsey Farenhem, Pembroke Pines Charter High School.
Drama: Daniel Abia, Miramar High School; Valeria Ceballos, Nova High School; Alyssa Fantel, American Heritage School.
English and Literature: Juanita Castro, Cypress Bay High School; Andrea Giugni, North Broward Preparatory School; Joseph McCully, Pembroke Pines Charter High School.
General Scholarship: Jude Alawa, American Heritage School; Cole Izak Bianco, University School of Nova Southeastern University; Silvia Daniela Moreno, Pompano Beach High School.
Journalism: Amanda Nicole Aloy, Charles W. Flanagan High School; Keyera Lyn, Hallandale High School; Alexandra Oshinsky, Pine Crest School.
Mathematics: Vivek Miglani, Marjory Stoneman-Douglas High School; Yasmeen Sarsour, McArthur High School; Miranda Vogt, North Broward Preparatory School.
Music and Dance: Nafeesah Attah, Plantation High School; Dalit Merenfeld, University School of Nova Southeastern University; Hannah Louise Parr, Saint Thomas Aquinas High School.
Science: Shari Kumar, University School of Nova Southeastern University; Kona Menyonga, Everglades High School; Alexandra Pellot, Charles W. Flanagan High School.
Social Science: Jeremy Abcug, J.P. Taravella High School; Justin Friedman, Nova High School; Omarley Spence, Pompano Beach High School.
Speech: Gina Bae, Coral Glades High School; Neha Saini, Miramar High School; Cody Sklar, Cypress Bay High School.
Vocational Technical: Katherine Castaner, Pembroke Pines Charter High School; Stefanie Yvette Francis, William T. McFatter Technical High School; Mitchell Ramos, Nova High School
World Languages: Nathalia Piedrahita, McArthur High School; Thalia Lorena Navia, Fort Lauderdale High School; Rachel Elizabeth Sereix, University High School of Nova Southeastern University.