Kemberlin Hernandez-Veliz has always been goal-oriented. Maybe it’s the athlete in her or it’s just her personality and inner drive. Whatever it is, the Huntington High School senior plans to attend Hofstra University and study neuroscience on a pre-med track. She’s been working hard in order to be successful in all of her future endeavors.
“I picked Hofstra because ever since I visited it as a tenth grader with my sister, I always felt like I was at home,” Ms. Hernandez-Veliz said. “I felt that Hofstra was for me. I revisited the campus last year and saw what a family-like atmosphere it had along with top academics. It really reminded me of Huntington’s spirit. It has a really good pre-med program, which I’m very interested in doing.”
The teenager’s sister, Evelyn is currently attending Hofstra and Ms. Hernandez-Veliz likes that she will have someone close by to guide her. My career interest is to become a doctor and either be an OB-GYN or a neonatologist, which both involve babies and women’s health. What motivated me to pursue a career in the medical field is volunteering at Huntington Hospital and with the Huntington Community First Aid Squad as an EMT. They both have motivated me to do something to help people out.”
The teenager regarded around the high school as a wonderful young woman who is well-liked and respected by her classmates, teachers and coaches.
“Huntington has prepared me for college with the Advanced Placement classes that I’ve been taking,” Ms. Hernandez-Veliz said. “The teachers really prepared me for how the classes will be and the teaching methods that professors will be using. I do feel ready to go to college with all the help Huntington has given to me.”
The senior said that although she plans to commute to and from Hofstra University for classes, it won’t prevent her from participating in extracurricular activities in college. “I hope to join the girls’ soccer club since I’ve always played and it’s had a great impact in my life,” Ms. Hernandez-Veliz said. “I also hope to join other clubs that revolve around my major.”
The teenager plays on the Blue Devil varsity basketball and soccer teams. A member of the high school’s National Honor Society chapter, Ms. Hernandez-Veliz has also been inducted into the Math Honor Society, English Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, Science Honor Society and Social Studies Honor Society. She is also a member of the Interact Club, Key Club and the Huntingtonian yearbook club.
“All the teachers that I have had at Huntington High School are beyond supportive,” the senior said. “Two teachers that have been great role models are Mrs. [Kristina] Morell and Mrs. [Joann] Ferazi. I’ve known Mrs. Morell since Finley, at which time she was a substitute teacher. My sophomore year she was my English teacher and she’s currently my English teacher. Mrs. Ferazi was my Algebra 2 teacher my junior year. They have both always inspired me to do my best and pushed me to do my greatest. Other amazing teachers and staff members that have helped over the years have been Mrs. [Dianna] Cazzalino, Mrs. [Amanda] Scott, Mr. [Fred] Bisongo, Mr. [Matthew] Ligouri, Mrs. [Lori] Kenny, Mr. [Kenneth] Donavan, Mr. [Robert] Gilmor, Mrs. [Lorena] Hickey and Mrs. [Elizabeth] Casazza.”
The senior said the most “valuable and interesting” high school courses that she’s taken are Advanced Placement Biology and AP Research.
“AP Bio with Mrs. [Deborah] Beck has helped me understand what a science class might feel like at college and what to expect,” Ms. Hernandez-Veliz said. “I also enjoy the topics we discuss in class. AP Research with Mrs. Morell has helped me learn how to create a research paper and improve my communication skills.”
Ms. Hernandez-Veliz said that what makes Huntington so special are the teachers and staff members.
“Everyone is just so nice and always caring,” the teenager said. “I’ve had so many great experiences with my friends, like homecoming, soccer games and the pep rally. What I will miss the most about Huntington will be all the memories that I made with a bunch of incredible people that I’ve met. I will miss the relationships that I have created over the years. My closest friends are Juliana Friebolin, Brianna Isaza, Julia Gorecki and Ryan Aguirre. I appreciate them very much and will miss the memories that I’ve made with them the most. I am very upset that I will be leaving Huntington soon, but I know that Huntington High School will always be special to me.”