Soroptimist recognizes outstanding high school seniors
Each month during the school year Soroptimist International of South Lake Tahoe recognizes seniors from South Tahoe and George Whittell High Schools for their academic and extracurricular accomplishments. Young Women of the Month for December are Arlyle Shaw of Whittell and Shayna Gianelli of South Tahoe. Young Women of the Month for January is Kimberly Burns of South Tahoe High.
Shaw is the daughter of Peter and Rowena Shaw of Stateline, Nev. “Arlyle listens to her own drum
mer. Everything she does, she does with her own flair,” said her Honors English teacher. She is a creative and artistic young woman who is an energetic and hard working scholar. She is an active member of the French Club, the yearbook staff, the school newspaper, the speech and debate team and with a 3.69 grade point average is a member of the National Honor Society.
Shaw is a gifted and passionate artist. According to her art teacher there is no art medium in which she does not excel. She always reaches to do her very best, spending her own time on setting up and maintaining the art show in the library. Her creativity extends to music as well. She plays the flute and made Honor Band this year. Shaw is also a gifted writer. Last summer she went to Yale as a Junior Statesman, where she impressed everyone with her ability to write. According to her English teacher she is able to give a visual aspect to her writing, she’s able to pull from her creative side.
She is also an athlete. She has gone to State running cross country the past three years and is ranked 12th in the state for her running. In her sophomore year she went to the National Junior Olympics and was Second Team All-State this year. She played basketball all four years of high school. Shaw loves to help others and actively volunteers her time. She has spent time tutoring children at the elementary school and has participated in food drives for her church and money drives for the Red Cross. This hard working, self-motivated young woman will attend the University of Nevada, Reno next year and hopes to study abroad, focusing on a career that helps people and includes the arts – perhaps as a teacher.
Gianelli is the daughter of Dean Gianelli of South Lake Tahoe. This self-described busy, overachieving, committed young woman is well-traveled and independent. She is self-sufficient and driven to succeed. She possesses a 4.4 grade point average in biology, statistics, language and composition, U.S. history, psychology, calculus, English l
iterature and composition, economics and Honors Spanish. Her academic counselor describes her as “one of those rare high school students who enhances her natural ability with a quality work ethic. She is a student who recognizes the need for balance between intellectual pursuits, a sound body and a strong moral character.”
Gianelli rounds out her academic achievements with athletic pursuits. She has run cross country for three years and is the captain of the cross country team this year. She is on the Heavenly Ski Foundation ski team, having raced since the age of 4.
Her true passion is performing. She is an anchor on the South Tahoe High School Viking Television production. She plays flute for the symphonic band. She has been dancing since the age of 5 and has appeared in the community production of “Ebenezer Scrooge” for the past 12 years. She has performed with the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco and her senior project is on movie production. She is considering a career in acting.
Gianelli’s extracurricular activities including being a member of the peer counseling program SMILE for four years, PHAT, a member of Key Club and California Scholarship Federation and she served as student body Chief Justice her junior and senior years.
Gianelli has applied to both Harvard and Brown universities, where she hopes to combine majors in acting and biology. She aspires to go on to graduate school for the Ph.D. and would like to act on screen.
Burns, the daughter of Jake and Barbara Burns of South Lake Tahoe, is ranked third in her senior class of 346. She is a National Merit Scholarship Semi-finalist, based on her outstanding Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude scores. She possesses a 4.42 grade point average, accomplished while taking the most rigorous academic program STHS offers including advanced placement courses in English language, English literature and composition, calculus, psycholo
gy, chemistry, economics, statistics and physics.
Burns is also talented in the performing arts and athletics. She has been dancing since preschool, is on the dance team an has performed in a number of local stage productions. She also plays the piano. She has competed on the swim team for the past four years.
Her leadership skills have been used to co-found PHAT (Philosophically Active Teens.) She is also an active member of the California Scholarship Federation and Active Christian Teens. As a leader of her Odyssey of the Mind team for the past two years, her team placed first in regional competition and found in the state for the two years running.
Burns loves languages and is presently taking Spanish, French and German with the hope of pursuing linguistics or possibly international relations as a career choice. She has applied to the University of California, Los Angeles, Stanford University, University of Chicago and Yale.
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