NFA World - Sun., Mar. 4

Dance Teams Take First Place

The NFA Visual and Performing Arts dance teams took first place at the New England Cheerleaders Association, Inc. Open Cheer and Dance Championship at East Haven High School Saturday, Feb. 24.

NFA Dance Teams
(back l-r) Leo Estrella, Shania Campo, Todd Thomas
(middle l-r) Caitlyn Kane, Jillian Watt, April Adorno (teacher), Zoe Walsh, Alaina Deshefy, Andrea Li, Lohanny Baez
(front l-r) Nicole Kirby, Kinte Tate, Tyelee Guilbert

Special Olympians Excel in Winter Games

NFA athletes brought home several medals from the Special Olympics Connecticut Speed & Figure Skating Competition, Feb. 26-27. Collectively the team brought home 5 gold, 5 silver, 4 bronze medals and had 2 fourth place finishers.

(back l-r) Morgan Torres, Wendy Enslow, Gerray Evelyn-Ann Isom, Mark Bastien, Justin Enslow
(front l-r) Zachary Alexander, Victoria Taccinie Dieujuste

Students Shine in Speech Contest

14 students competed in the Norwich Rotary Club’s 4-Way Speech Contest on Thurs., Mar. 1. Students prepared 5-7 minute speeches on a topic of their choice, putting it to the 4-way test: Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Will to build goodwill and better friendships? Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

First place went to Marian Chong Cuy and Anna Ciriello, who will both compete in the next round on March 10. Second place was Makia Correia and Owen Smith came in third.

Student Speech Topics:
Madelyn Bell - No Major? No problem: Your Life Doesn’t Need to be Planned Out at 18 Years Old
Marina Britos-Swain - Treatment of the Mentally Ill
Marian Chong Cuy - Importance of Being Mindful About Our Humor
Anna Ciriello - Space Exploration is Vital for Humankind
Sydney Collins - Rising Cost of Tuition and its Detriments to College Students
Sydney Corl - Toxic Masculinity
Makia Correia - Body Image
Brielle Jewell - Food Stamps for Fido
Elefteria Kilimos - Become an Organ Donor
Jacob LaMothe - Diversity Day
Lauren Mikkelson - Mandating Vaccines in Public Schools: Keeping our Children Healthy
Michaela Sabrowski - Personal Mindset
Owen Smith - Legalize Marijuana in all States
Warren Strong - Living in Harmony with Nature: Importance of Wildlife in Urbanized Areas

l-r Makia Correia, Anna Ciriello, Owen Smith, Marian Chong Cuy

Senior Named Finalist for National Merit Scholarship

Scott Christian Celey, Jr. ’18 has been selected as a finalist for the National Merit Scholarship. He will compete with other finalists for 7,500 scholarships worth about $32 million.

About 1.6 million students from more than 22,000 American high schools initially entered the competition by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. About 15,000 students were selected as finalists.

To advance to the final round of competition, Celey worked with his counselor to submit a detailed application with information about the his academic record, participation in school and community activities, leadership abilities, honors and awards. The winners will be announced later this month.

Robert Briones, Celey’s school counselor, said “I have never seen a student with a resume like (Celey’s.) He is a multi-talented kid.”

While some students choose to relax a little in their senior year, Celey is not slowing down. This year he has challenged himself with AP/UCONN Physics 1&2, Honors Astronomy, AP English Literature, and AP Calculus, among others. In addition to his rigorous academic schedule, he is also a member of the school chorus and theater programs and he is the manager for the swimming and diving teams, keyboardist for the pit orchestra, and a member of the Environmental Club.

Last year Celey was chosen as the NFA representative in the Connecticut Governor’s Scholar Program for his academic achievement and he participated in the International Chemistry Olympiad.

Celey plans to study physical sciences and has applied to the University of Connecticut, Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Massachusetts – Amherst, Northeastern University, and Yale University.


Final thought: Fred De Witt Van Amburgh said, “None is more impoverished than the one who has no gratitude. Gratitude is a currency that we can mint for ourselves, and spend without fear of bankruptcy.”

Geoff Serra is director of communications and public affairs at NFA. Reach him at 

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