Huntington High School’s world language honor societies aren’t allowing the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing school closure to interfere with the 2020 induction of new members. This year’s ceremony has gone virtual with each of the four organizations taking to the airwaves.
The French, Italian, Latin and Spanish honor societies are welcoming dozens of new members into their respective organizations. The teenagers are mastering a second or even a third language.
Society faculty advisors Deidre Mayer (French), Natalia Kopshti (Italian), Kristin Fortunato (Latin) and Nadine Araoz (Spanish) and Maria Gonzalez (Spanish) are proud of their new members as well as the continuing members who have made each of the organizations so strong over the years. Department Director Judy Goris-Moroff joined in the festivities.
The four separate virtual induction ceremonies are all posted on the district’s website at www.hufsd.edu. They featured stirring commentary, time honored traditions and even musical performances.
French Honor Society
The French Honor Society welcomed new members in Sarah Berry, Cassidy Casabona, Sophie Laserson, Allie Neber, Mary Grace Rorke and Regan Sansiviero.
Diya Rai-Gersappe and Hannah Avidor lead the organization as its president and vice president, respectively. Julien Rentsch is the group’s treasurer and Moira Contino is the secretary.
“As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, our schools, like many across the country, were prematurely closed, which meant that we had to improvise and have virtual induction ceremonies to celebrate the incoming honor society members,” Ms. Rai-Gersappe said. “This virtual induction would not have been possible without the help from our faculty advisor, Madame Mayer, the current members and Robbie Caputi for helping put together this virtual ceremony.”
The pandemic allowed each of the four world language honor societies to record their own separate virtual ceremony. “This means that for the first time, all current members of the French Honor Society were able to contribute to the induction ceremony and show how impactful and important being involved in a foreign language can be,” Ms. Avidor said. “We are happy these new members will be joining the French Honor Society in order to honor its history of celebrating the culture of French-speaking countries, learning about French literature and helping those in need in francophone nations; especially raising money to help children in Paulette, Haiti get access to proper education, food and medical care. We congratulate all the new inductees on this accomplishment and hope to see them thrive within the honor society.”
The virtual induction ceremony was delightful. It included a keynote address by Madelyn Kye and an exceptional musical interlude by Julien Rentsch.
“I couldn’t be prouder of the French Honor Society this year,” Mrs. Mayer said. “Despite the pandemic, we remain united not only in the intellectual pursuit of French and French culture, but in our support of the new members. Diya was my president and due to scheduling difficulties she audited the class. However, it did not stop her from being a strong French Honor Society president. She and our vice president, Hannah Avidor were wonderful in their leadership. Although we were not able to have the dodgeball tournament, we raised enough money to send our yearly contribution of $500 to Haiti Feed, which sends funds to Paulette Haiti to educate, feed and vaccinate children. Although we are here in Huntington, it’s wonderful that with our team effort we can support and help change the lives of others in Haiti.”
Italian Honor Society
The Italian Honor Society’s new members include Lena Annunziata, Stephanie Bardales, Madelyn Bavaro, David Canas Granados, Isabella Famiglietti, Charles Girimonti, Elizabeth Heffernan, Adrianna LoScalzo, Sofia Marchetta, Matthew Minicozzi, Ryan Porzio, Gabby Trimboli, Nathali Ulloa and Claudia Villatoro.
This year’s Italian Honor Society’s executive board includes Carmine De Ieso (president), Kyra DeSalvo (vice president), Jorge Parada (treasurer), Lily O’Heir (secretary) and Angelica Hernandez (historian).
“I am so honored to congratulate the new Italian Honor Society inductees into our organization," Mrs. K”pshti said. “You have all demonstrated such passion and true dedication to the Italian culture and its language. I would also like to thank all members and officers for putting their heart and soul into the society. It has been a pleasure working with you all. I look forward to what next year has in store for the organization and you all. Grazie e congratulazioni a tutti voi.”
Latin Honor Society
Huntington’s Latin Honor Society chapter added 16 new members including Anna Koulakova, Gracia Renkewitz, Nicholas Tudisco, Sabeena Ali, Jake Burton, Grace Collavecchio, Morgan Colleluori, Alec Cordeiro, Sydney Cordeiro, Nicolas DiPietro, Erik Flores Reyes, Lauren Holly, Alexis Kaloudis, Alexandra Kustera, Erin Ye and Sophia Toscano.
The Latin Honor Society’s executive board features Isabella Toscano (president), Zubair Ali (vice president), Kyle Colleuori (treasurer), Maggie Lalor (recording secretary), Ella Siepel (corresponding secretary) and Lily Stein (public relations coordinator).
“This year’s class of Latin Honor Society inductees is unique,” Ms. Fortunato said. “They have always worked hard in their language study and stood out as wonderful examples of the Latin phrase ‘labor omnia vincit.’ This has never proved more true than during this time of distance learning. This special group has continued to excel no matter the circumstances and the honor of their induction is well deserved.”
Spanish Honor Society
The Spanish Honor Society’s new members include Brenda Acevedo, Lisette Alvarez Ortez, Kevin Arevalo, Cristian Avelar-Romero, Karen Avila Anariba, Teddi Carnesi, Gretel Cassell, Jazmynn Clark, Caelan Clayton, Eduardo Consuegra Linares, Olivia Conte, Emely Cruz, Laura Curtin, Finley Dunn, Katherine Eichenberger, Cristy Dayanne Elvir, Naysa Escobar-Rizo, Alexander Frawley, Juliana Friebolin, Peter Gaal, Orfa Granados Granados, Vennyse Green, Robert Harrington, Ella Kamenstein, Jasjeet Kaur, Noa Kimmelman, Angelina Larkin, Liam Lennon, Jillian LoTurco, Keyla Maldonado Molina and Victoria Mangan.
Leonid Martinez Soto, Angie Mata, Rachel Morina, Ella Naima, Margo Nitekman, Stacey Pena Sosa, Emily Plachta, Ainsley Proctor, Keylin Quintanilla Villalobos, Neha Rathore, Samir Rathore, Luke Rinaldi, Yanira Rivera Ronquillo, Hannah Roberts, Zoe Sakellarios, Ever Salinas Alas, Sophia Segal, Leah Sheran, Abigail Simon, Robert Smith, Felipe Villanueva, Henry Vohs, Daniela Weihskopf Escobar, Stephanie Wickey and Anna Bell Young were also welcomed into the organization as new members.
This year’s Spanish Honor Society’s executive board features Julia Segal (president), Patricia Campos-Serpas (vice president), Rocio Trujillo (treasurer), Peyton Kalb (corresponding secretary), Natalie Ciccone (recording secretary), Brian Contreras (programs organizer) and administrative assistants Erick Flores-Reyes and Emerson Flores.
“We are very proud of the students being inducted,” Ms. Araoz said. “They have pursued the study of Spanish with diligence and their induction recognizes all their effort and character. Our hard-working president Julia Segal and her fellow officers of the society created this ceremony for the inductees, their parents and the Huntington community.”