SPOTSWOOD, NJ - Spotswood High School senior Sheliza Dollete has had a full schedule during her four years as a Charger. She has been a member of the Concert Band, the Environmental Club, Euphony, a group leader for Heroes and Cool Kids, Honors Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, Peer-to-Peer Connections, Pep Band, Music Club, TEAMS and the Percussion Ensemble. The National Honor Society member was also the senior editor of the yearbook and a scenic artist for the Spotswood High School Troupers. Dollete was the Spotswood High School Student-of-the-Month for December. Outside of school, the former Girl Scout enjoys art and music lessons along with volunteer work. She was named along with her classmate Yanni Hatzistefanis as Most Artistic.
"I'm not the best with academics, but I love participating in all sorts of activities," Dollete said. "The responsibilities I have in them take up much of my schedule. A regular week in late winter-early spring would be jazz on Monday, yearbook on Tuesday, Music Club/TEAMS and jazz on Wednesday, Environmental or yearbook on Thursday and Percussion Ensemble on Friday."
"For the past couple of years, the bands I'm in and Yearbook Club have taken up the most of my life," she continued. "I spend lots of time preparing for concerts and I'm devoted to yearbook enough to take a class period for it. I have over a hundred hours into it, along with my partner Ricky Rodriguez, and I hope that the effort we as a club put in shows, especially this year. I also love Heroes & Cool Kids, and I'm so upset that I won't be seeing my little buddy in Ms. Lisiandra's class this year one more time before I go to college.Though I've been committed to band for four years, a part of me wishes that I spent more time involving myself with SHS's fine arts and design programs, as that's where some of my strengths and more vivid passions lie."
Dollete's favorite Spotswood High School classes have always been her electives. She's enjoyed Honors Computer Graphics and Design III with Joseph Schwartz, Honors Wind Ensemble with Sarah Carino-Koza and AP Studio Art with Alyson Collins. Honors Chemistry may not have been her one of her favorite classes, but Christopher Talish definitely earned high marks from Dollete as a top teacher.
"My favorite teacher is undoubtedly Mr. Talish," Dollete said. "He's the best in my eyes. His teaching is driven by his cool personality, which I've gotten to see many hints of in Music Club, TEAMS and Honors Chemistry. He encouraged me to pursue my interests and I can always rely on him to be honest with a situation."
"I would also like to make a shoutout to Mr. Sposato and Mr. Dempsey, as they have only been supportive of me since the day they met me, and Mrs. Carino-Koza and Mrs. Furman for knowing me the longest as a student and through the heartfelt moments we spend together in the activities we do," Dollete added.
Dollete had a very challenging schedule for her final year at Spotswood High School. So, she is looking forward to focusing on some of her personal interests and creative projects once school is finished in June. Dollete is also extremely excited to not have to do summer work for the first time in ages. She plans on studying architecture in college.
While Dollete is excited about what the future holds, like her classmates she is disappointed at how the graduating class' senior year has been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
"Though many opportunities of this year are lost and I'm deeply saddened that the class of 2020 won't have their chance to bring pride to Spotswood High School with achievements at the band trip, DECA trips, spring sports, the art show or even graduation, I'm not too worried because the powerful effect of us as a class will definitely be present when the time comes." Dollete said. "I'm also not worried because I know that when we graduate, we'll be leaving SHS to the rest of the hundreds of students and staff who will continue to shine radiantly as they fill the community with a never ending supply of wonderful skills and heart."
*Senior Spotlight will be a daily feature in the upcoming weeks in conjunction with Spotswood High School and the Spotswood PTA. To have a member of the Class of 2020 featured, email firstname.lastname@example.org.