Union County News

Mother Seton Students Achieve National Merit Scholar Commendation

Bernadette Yamakaitis of Clark, a student at Mother Seton Regional High School, is a 2017 National Merit Commended Scholar. Credits: Courtesy of Mother Seton Regional High School
Clara Dizon of Woodbridge, a student at Mother Seton Regional High School, is a 2017 National Merit Commended Scholar. Credits: Mother Seton Regional High School

CLARK, NJ – In recognition of outstanding academic achievement on the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (PSAT), two Mother Seton Regional High School seniors received “Commended Student” status through the National Merit Scholarship Program, the school recently announced.

“The student body of Mother Seton is doubly blessed with two outstanding scholars this year,”
Laura M. Olden-Flammia, Director of Development and Alumnae Relations, said.

Clark resident Bernadette Yamakaitis intends to pursue a career in civil engineering with a concentration in city planning.  She said her top choices for colleges are The University of Chicago, Stevens Institute of Technology, George Washington University, and Cornell.  Before entering Mother Seton, she, along with her two brothers, was home-schooled by her mother.  

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Yamakaitis’ broad interests include politics, computers and the environment. She runs cross country and track, plays violin in the Seton Ensemble, is a Seton Ambassador, and competes on the Science and Math Leagues.  Her diverse talent has drawn her to theatrical productions.  Most recently she appeared My Fair Lady, and Arsenic and Old Lace at St. Joseph High School, Metuchen, where her brother is a junior.

Commended Students placed among the top five percent of more than 1.6 million students who entered the 2017 competition by taking the 2015 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying  Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), according to the NMS Corporation.

Also qualifying from Mother Seton is Clara Dizon, a Woodbridge resident. She is interested in international relations, politics and economics, specifically in the Middle East.  She hopes to further her studies at George Washington University, American University, Georgetown, or Stanford.

A dancer for 11 years, Dizon performs competitively with her private dance studio and participates in the Mother Seton Drill Team.   Also a member of the Seton Ensemble, Dizon plays the flute.  Academic extracurriculars include the school’s Math League and Academic Challenge Team.

Dizon is an avid traveler who recently visited Paris, France where she was able to utilize French language skills acquired in the Mother Seton French program.

“With students like Clara and Bernadette gracing our halls, the future is bright for our beloved school,” Olden-Flammia said.

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