Education

Meet North Plainfield High School’s Class of 2017 Valedictorian and Salutatorian

bf1ba943068c9ab43bbe_Val-Sal_NPHS_.jpg
North Plainfield High School Class of 2017 Salutatorian Kevin Andrade and Valedictorian Yanqing Liang.
bf1ba943068c9ab43bbe_Val-Sal_NPHS_.jpg

(Editor’s Note: Amaiana Sajjad is a senior at North Plainfield High School and an intern for TAPinto North Plainfield.)

NORTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Yanqing Liang has been named valedictorian of North Plainfield High School’s (NPHS) Class of 2017 and Kevin Andrade has been named salutatorian.

“It feels wonderful to be the valedictorian, knowing that my hard work for the past four years has paid off,” said Liang. “I think it's also an extreme honor to have such a notable title, as it is difficult to maintain good grades while being an active community member and having fun at the same time.”

Sign Up for E-News

Andrade added, “There's a lot work and studying that goes into maintaining such a position. I've always been self-motivated, but knowing that I had the pressure to maintain such a position pushed me further. Most of the work and preparing came from being motivated and having goals that allowed me to always push forward.”

During their high school career, both students were active members of the NPHS community service club, Interact, as well as the National Honor Society, Italian Honor Society, Science League, Canuck Mentors program, and more. Additionally, Liang and Andrade were also involved in athletics. Andrade played soccer throughout his high school career, including serving as the varsity team his junior and senior year; Liang was a member of the varsity tennis team for three years.

Although Liang and Andrade were both enrolled in advanced proficiency classes since sixth grade, neither entered high school with the goal of being the top two students in their graduating class. Grateful and honored to have achieved this rank, Liang and Andrade said their parents have been the inspiration for their success.

“I don't think I necessarily have a person to look up to as a model for maintaining high standards and grades, but it's more like a mindset that I developed because of my parents,” said Liang, noting that her father was a fantastic mathematician who, unfortunately, did not have the opportunity to further his education in China. Additionally, her mother was unable to finish high school due to economic limitations.

“Knowing their situations and their expectations of me made me want to make them proud. I never really had being a valedictorian as a goal until sophomore year,” said Liang. “My attitude towards school was always to be the best so that I can be to make my parents proud.”

For Andrade, the inspiration for maintaining such high academic standards has always been his parents. “I know how much they have sacrificed for me to be where I am today,” Andrade said. “I want to make their sacrifice worthwhile so I set high standards for myself.”

Come the fall, Liang will attend Stevens Institute of Technology and major in civil engineering with a minor in environmental science. Andrade is headed to Princeton University and plans to pursue a degree in aerospace engineering.

TAPinto North Plainfield, Green Brook and Watchung is free and published daily; sign up to get all the news as it happens at www.tapinto.net/enews and follow us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/TAPintoNPGBW and on Twitter @tapintonpgbw

 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

North Plainfield/Green Brook/Watchung

Third-annual Juneteenth Parade and Heritage Festival in New Brunswick this Weekend

June 15, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - The Vulcan Pioneers of New Brunswick, comprising the city's Black Fire Fighters Association, will host the Juneteenth Parade on Saturday, June 16 to commemorate the Emancipation Proclamation.

Juneteenth celebrations are held across the country to mark the announcement of the abolition of slavery in Texas in June 1865. That state was one of the last locations to learn of ...

Manutti Marina in Belmar: Top Choice for Boating, Fishing and All-Around Family Fun

BELMAR, NJ — It’s no secret that Belmar Manutti Marina ranks among the best boating destinations along the Atlantic coast.

Tucked along the eastern shoreline of the idyllic Shark River — just a five-minute trip by boat to the ocean — the state-of-the-art marina is a top choice among boaters looking to stay for the season, enjoy a vacation or spend the weekend.

In ...

Manutti Marina in Belmar: Top Choice for Boating, Fishing and All-Around Family Fun

June 12, 2018

BELMAR, NJ — It’s no secret that Belmar Manutti Marina ranks among the best boating destinations along the Atlantic coast.

Tucked along the eastern shoreline of the idyllic Shark River — just a five-minute trip by boat to the ocean — the state-of-the-art marina is a top choice among boaters looking to stay for the season, enjoy a vacation or spend the weekend.

In ...

Summer Camp Programs for Children and Teens Announced By Environmental Education Center

June 18, 2018

BERNARDS TWP., NJ – Each summer, the Environmental Education Center (EEC) in Basking Ridge holds programs that let children and teens explore nature for summer activities that both entertaining and an opportunity to learn about the environment.

The programs are organized and led by the EEC's staff of naturalists.

The EEC is a Somerset County facility located at 190 Lord ...

Get Empowered to Help Prevent Suicide

June 8, 2018

Dear Editor:

Over the past week social media and the news have been filled with stories and articles encouraging people to seek help if they’re in emotional distress. There have been countless articles about the need to break the silence around the topic of mental health and suicide, and I am encouraged by the support people are extending to others.

Often, the death by suicide by ...

Obituaries

South Plainfield, NJ – Margaret (Pascazio) Butfiloski, 99, passed away peacefully on June 2, ...
Read more

Upcoming Events

Mon, June 25, 9:00 AM

Terrill Road Baptist Chruch, Scotch Plains

Terrill Road Baptist Church

WHRHS Athletics: Watchung Hills Names New Athletic Director

June 19, 2018

WARREN, NJ - The Watchung Hills Board of Education announced a new Director of Athletics at its meeting on Tuesday night to replace Chris Van Vliet who has resigned. WHRHS world language teacher, Dan Root was unanimously approved as the WHRHS Director of Athletics effective July 1.

“I’m excited to work with newly appointed athletic director Mr. Root,” said WHRHS head football ...

A Path Forward for Watchung Schools Set for June 25

 

WATCHUNG, NJ - A Path Forward for Watchung Schools, a listening forum for Watchung parents, residents, and teachers to communicate to make Watchung Schools great, has been set for Monday, June 25. 

 

Watchung has three leadership positions open: Superintendent, Principal of Bayberry School, and Chief Administrator. The listening forum will be hosted and moderated by ...

WHRHS Athletics: 30 Watchung Hills Student Athletes Commit to Play College Sports

WARREN, NJ - Some 30 student athletes from the Watchung Hills Regional High School (WHRHS) Class of 2018 gathered  in the WHRHS Media Center for one last Warrior team photo before reporting to their intended respective colleges or universities in the fall.

Columbia, Yale and Princeton, Stevens, Rensselaer and M.I.T. are among some 27 other Division I, II, or III colleges ...

North Plainfield Board of Education Recognizes Student Athletes

NORTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - The North Plainfield Board of Education had the opportunity to celebrate the victories of the district's distinguished student athletes at the last Board of Education meeting.  Brandon Smith, Daniel Duncan, Trevor Sullivan, and Edgardo Villafane represented the Boys' Indoor Track Team.  The team was victorious as the New Jersey North II, Group II ...

Watchung’s Rizzi Ties Record at Rotary Track and Field Meet, North Plainfield Middle School Dominates in Awards Tally

PLAINFIELD, NJ - With an overcast sky and pleasantly cool temperatures, young student athletes from area middle schools and one elementary school gathered for the 91st Annual Rotary Track and Field Meet, held June 6 at the Hub Stine Athletic Complex in Plainfield.

Vincent Rizzi, holder of the Meet high jump records for boys ages 12 and 13, tried valiantly to best the 14 year old boys’ ...

North Plainfield Board of Education Recognizes 2018 Teachers of the Year

 

NORTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - North Plainfield School District's Teachers  of the Year were recognized at the Board of Education meeting on June 5, at West End School.  The evening began at 7:00 pm with a performance by the High School Jazz Band.  Opening remarks, made by  Human Resources Director, Phyllis Prestamo and Acting Superintendent ...

SCBP Biz Fest 2018 Draws Record Crowd

June 17, 2018

SOMERSET, NJ - More than 500 people attended Biz Fest 2018, Somerset County's ‘hyper-local’ trade show and networking event, on Thursday at the Imperia.

The Somerset County Business Partnership (SCBP) organized the event.  SCBP Vice President of Business Services Chris Edwards said that this year's Biz Fest was a huge success. 

"This has been ...

Update: Police Break Up Fight Involving 40-50 People at Bridgewater Commons Mall

BRIDGEWATER, NJ — No injuries have been reported in an incident that shut down Bridgewater Commons Mall Thursday evening after a fight involving a crowd of 40-50 people.

Police are still investigating unconfirmed reports of shots being fired, according to the Somerset County Prosecutor's Office.

The mall is closed for the evening as the investigation continues.

Somerset County ...