UNION, NJ—Union High School students Elizabeth Arias and Zachary Radler have been selected as 2020 Union Country Interscholastic Association Conference Scholar-Athletes for their commitment to excellence in academics and athletics. And Union High School senior Bryan Kwarteng has been selected to receive the 2020 NJSIAA Scholar-Athlete Award.
“We are proud of our senior student-athletes,” said Athletic Director Linda Ionta. “They were successful both academically and athletically. Their character and dedication to their community is part of the reason they were chosen to represent Union High School. I would like to congratulate our athletes as well as their parents and families on these awards.”
Each year, the school athletic department selects a male and female student athlete who embodies the qualities of an exceptional scholar athlete—leadership, intelligence, dedication, and motivation—striving for greatness in athletics and academics. The following criteria were guidelines used to choose the 2020 UCIAC scholar athletes: Nominee must be a graduating senior; nominee should have participated in extra-curricular activities; nominee must have participated in an UCIAC sponsored varsity sport; nominee must have exhibited athletic and academic excellence.
Radler participated in Cross Country, Winter Track and Spring Track. Radler said throughout his four years at Union High School, he valued his education above all else. He said he has maintained a 4.6 weighted GPA and a 3.9 unweighted GPA, placing him in the top five percent of his class.
“In my senior year I took the certification test and became a Certified AutoCAD User helping me pursue my career as an architect,” Radler said. “In my pursuit for further education I have applied and been accepted to Kean University, NJIT and Penn State.” He said he plans on attending NJIT as “his home for the next 5 years due to their incredible faculty, facilities, location and alumni.”
In his sports achievements, Radler said he ran Cross Country in the fall and ran Track in the winter and spring seasons. He was named Captain in all three seasons in his senior year and received two Varsity awards in Cross Country and three in both Winter and Spring Track, competing at the town, county and state level “where our teams have found much success.”
Radler said clubs were always a big part of his Union High School experience. He is a member of the Peer Leadership Program, where he has attained the highest achievable level in the club, the Emissary level. In his junior and senior years, he has been in the ACE
Mentoring program. In his senior year he joined Farmer Fam as a core team member and was inducted into the National Honor Society.
Softball player Arias received her varsity letter freshman year in 2017, following three certificates of athletic achievement awards in the spring seasons of 2017, 2018, and 2019. Later in the 2018 and 2019 season, she received honorable mention in the county conference.
Arias has also received a third year varsity award for the 2018-2019 season as well as the captain title. She represented Union High school and received recognition for being a participant in the 2020 National Women’s Sports Day.
Arias said she has been involved in the National Spanish Honors Society since her sophomore year and was elected secretary for the 2019-2020 school year. “Not just as an officer but as a member of the society, I have been able to contribute to our school community,” she said. “We have hosted several events to allow the Hispanic community feel more welcomed.” Arias said a popular event, Latin Dance night, promotes unity between everyone regardless of ethnicity. “It’s important to our society that everyone is viewed as one family,” she added.
Arias said she has been involved in the Allied Health Program since the 2018 school year. She said the members have hosted several bake sales, toy drives, food drives, and participated in marathons to bring awareness to several diseases.
Arias said she has volunteered at churches, retirement homes and hospitals for the last three years. She said she has created relationships with the elders and staff who now consider her family and “that’s something you just can’t buy at a store.”
Arias said she will be attending Rowan University Fall 2020, majoring in Psychology. She said she will be part of an accelerated program called Degree in Three, which provides an opportunity for students to achieve a bachelor’s degree in three years.
Kwarteng carried a 3.9 GPA and is a member of the National Honors Society, the Spanish National Honors Society, and the Key Club. He is Secretary of Model UN, a Peer Emissary Leader of Union High School Ambassadors, a Sergeant in Arms of Men’s Empowerment, and a social media advisor for the Farmers Fam.
Kwarteng is Captain of Varsity Track and Field and was elected Senior Class President.
In athletics, Kwarteng is a four time state champion: 400mh State Sectional Champion 2019; State Sectional Champion 4x2; State Sectional Champion 4x4; and State Group IV Champion 4x4.
Outside of school, Kwarteng is a musical leader at Qodesh Family Church.