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Sara Camnasio: Volleyball Star's Academics Really Add Up

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The latest Health Plus/NY1 Scholar Athlete is described by one her teachers as being nearly perfect as she looks to pursue her dreams of becoming an astronaut. NY1's Jon Weinstein field the following report.

Take one quick look at the unbelievably high level math equations Sara Camnasio solves, like an infinite convergence series, and you know she's got an intellectual gift that few students possess.

"When you solve a math problem, you're like, 'Whoa that's great, I want to do another one.' And then you solve that one and it goes on, and it's like an addiction. And at the end of the day I find myself with huge boards filled with numbers, and I'm like, 'Wow I did all that,'" says Sara.

Her teachers say Sara has an unparalleled academic curiosity and that will help her fulfill her dream of learning all things necessary to become an astronaut.

"You have to be an engineer, a pilot, you have to be a physicist, you have to be a whole different number of things, and it really is like my dream to know so many things," says Sara.

Sara is so accomplished her teachers say it almost seems like she's perfect the student. As her class valedictorian, she was the first Williamsburg Preparatory School student ever to receive a perfect score on an Advanced Placement test. Now, she's teaching herself the most advanced calculus course for a high school student.

"Everyday I'm amazed at what she can do. I've never had a student who has the natural problem solving ability she has," says Greg Hitt, Sara's math teacher.

Sara only moved to the U.S. from Italy in her sophomore year of high school, and didn't know much English. She embraced that challenge the way she seemed to embrace every challenge with hard work.

"If you catch her in the hallway, you'll catch her reading 900,000 page books both in her native Italian and in English. And I think it's indicative or symbolic of her work ethic," says Jason Raymond, Sara's English teacher.

Sara also transformed her school's volleyball team. She's the captain and used her previous playing experience to lead her squad to its first playoff berth in seven years.

"She came on a college level with her jump serves and also her spiking ability and as well as her aggression to the game, and I'm very impressed with her leadership skills," says Marsha Huguet, Sara's volleyball coach.

No matter where Sara ends up going to college, she says she's excited about the academic challenge to come.

"Sometimes I think I can't wait to go to college to just sit and lecture with a teacher, I love discussing, I love debates," says Sara.

So, for going above and beyond to be her school's most successful student, Sara Camnasio is the latest Health Plus/NY1 Scholar Athlete.

Nominate A Student

The NY1/Time Warner Cable Business Class Scholar Athlete program celebrates student athletes who successfully combine academics with athletics, and also find time for community service. The program, operated in conjunction with the New York City Department of Education, is open to any senior attending a New York City public high school.

 

Each week of the school year, a selected student is profiled on NY1 and receives a partial scholarship to the school they choose to attend in the fall.

 

To apply, download and print out the official Scholar Athlete application, then mail it to the address on the form.

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