This week's Health Plus/NY1 Scholar Athlete, Brooklyn senior Edward Aminov, found a unique way to learn at first and is now on the path to earning a Ph.D. NY1's Jon Weinstein filed the following report.
Between, school and sports, the last thing most scholar-athletes have time for is TV. But Eddie Aminov made the time and developed a love for something that has had a big impact on his life — biology.
"A lot of watching Animal Planet, the Discovery Channel, these experiments, 'Nature,' the show 'Planet Earth,' all those different shows really exposed me to biology," says Eddie.
It wasn't hard for Eddie to apply his natural curiosity to his studies at James Madison High School in Midwood, Brooklyn, where he is the valedictorian.
"He's very diligent, he's very serious, and I think he loves biology in particular," says biology teacher Philippe Valbrune. "And he works hard and he goes beyond, he always goes the extra mile in doing work in classes."
Eddie is an example to everyone at Madison, but especially to his fellow students on the swim team. He is the captain, a position he held as a junior as well, and through that role he motivates his teammates to succeed.
"I was looking for someone who could set a great example for all the team to follow and Edward was my obvious choice. It's so unusual to excel in athletics and academics at the same time and to be a valedictorian, it's unique," says swim coach Michael Davis.
"The feeling of competing pushes me not only in swimming and all my studies. I believe that if it wasn't for the swim team, I wouldn't be valedictorian or anything I've reached in school," says Eddie.
The senior plans on attending college on the West Coast next year, and he is taking his love of biology to the next level by majoring in biomedical engineering.
"Biomedical engineering involves the use of all these engineering techniques we might use in other parts of society and we sort of involve them with the human body, to treat certain diseases that could not have been treated just with simple medicine," says Eddie.
So, for going from just a kid learning biology lessons on TV, to being a student ready to tackle the path to a Ph.D, Eddie Aminov is the latest Health Plus/NY1 Scholar Athlete of the Week.