North Haven High School AP Sandra Preneta (R) recently posed with the Dec/Jan Students of the Month and their families.


The North Haven Rotary Club honors two top academic achievers at North Haven High School on a bi-monthly basis. As she proudly introduced the Students of the Month from the Junior class selected by the staff for December and January, Assistant Principal Sandra Preneta pointed out that the duo had earned over 500 community service hours, “far exceeding the 40 hour requirement for graduation.”


Accompanied at the recognition breakfast meeting by her mother, Wendy Marinelli, Olivia Marinelli thanked the service club for the recognition and credited her parents, teachers, and coaches for teaching her that “hard work and dedication do pay off.” Describing herself as someone who has been helping others her “entire life”, she said, “my parents have always said that we should help others before we help ourselves”, adding “and I began to enjoy helping others.” She described her extensive hours spent teaching the skills of swimming to children, as well as leading backstage work for musicals at both the middle school and the high school. Olivia looks forward to a career in either the health industry or in education after college.


In regard to the first notice that he was to receive recognition from Rotary, Hunter Coughlin said, “the feeling that came over me was one I had never felt before.” He went on to express his deep appreciation for the honor, not only to the service club, but also to his parents, and to the staff and administration at the high school. Joined at the Breakfast Nook Restaurant by his family, Kim and Tom Coughlin, Hunter listed his many accomplishments which included service to Special Olympics; Diversity Club; Music Honor Society and every aspect of the music program; his church and his work at soup kitchens, as well as his service to the homeless. The young man closed with a quote from Pope Francis, “In serving others, we find our salvation.”