In a highly competitive high school environment its hard to stand out, but the latest Healthplus/NY1 Scholar Athlete has done just that at Bronx High School of Science. NY1's Kevin Garrity filed the following report.
Bronx High School of Science senior Nishi Tavernier has managed to stand out at a highly competitive high school environment. She maintains a 92 average in one of the most academically-challenging city high schools. She has also made a name on the basketball court, where she finished up a four-year stint on the varsity team.
"What I do know is that various schools pride themselves on scholar-athletes," says Marsha Williams, Tavernier's advanced placement microeconomics teacher. "Princeton talks about its sports figures - in particular I think of Bill Bradley - as being scholar-athletes. That is who Nishi is. She is clearly a strong academic individual."
"There is a lot of teamwork and she's been great at that," says Francisco Uceda, Tavernier's Spanish teacher. "Those parallels from the court to the classroom, you can totally see them."
Tavernier led Bronx Science to the semifinals of the class-A city championships, where her team lost to Baruch, the eventual city champion. It was the deepest any Bronx Science girls' basketball team had ever gone in the city playoffs.
"Before the game, we said we were going to leave it all on the court and we circled up and said what we were going to bring to the game," says Tavernier. "At the end of the game, we realized that we gave it all we had, so it's nothing that we should be ashamed of, or hang our heads. There's not a lot of teams that even make it to the finals, so it's something we should be proud of."
"She brought us back in the fourth quarter, she scored 17 points in the fourth quarter, and she really took it on in her own way. She just came up a little short," said girls' basketball coach Bob Gregory. "That even made more tears, I think, that we came that close."
The senior will continue playing basketball in college while taking premed classes. Right now, she has an offer to play at Washington University in St. Louis and she is also waiting to hear from Brown and Harvard.
Tavernier would like to be a pediatrician one day.
"At first, I wanted to be a lawyer, but I'm not really into the whole 'reading a lot' thing," she says. "Yes, it has a lot to do with my mom being a nurse and just being around her. It's just very interesting for me and especially after taking biology freshman year, I was like, 'Okay, this is something I definitely want to do.'"
Rising to the top at a prestigious high school and on the city basketball courts seems like just the beginning for Nishi Tavernier. For that, she is honored as the Heathplus/NY1 Scholar Athlete of the week.
The Health Plus/NY1 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 $2,000 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.