Exchange Club of Sebastian – Students of the Month

Exchange Club Students
Exchange Club Students

The Exchange Club of Sebastian is proud to announce their January Students and Youth of the Month. Sebastian Exchange Club’s Young Citizenship Award honors pre-high school students who daily demonstrate good citizenship at school and home.

The program is designed to recognize and encourage honest, hard-working, helpful, and fair youngsters. In practice, the Young Citizenship Award provides classroom teachers with an effective tool to further motivate promising students. 

Additionally, it provides Sebastian Exchange Club with an enjoyable opportunity to supply the encouragement that can be so vitally important in shaping youngsters’ characters at an impressionable time in their lives. 

Students of the Month

  • Diego Marentes – Storm Grove Middle School
  • Kristina Puscher – Sebastian Charter Junior High School
  • Nathaniel Alexander – Sebastian River Middle School

Diego Marentes

Diego Marentes is a quiet leader in the classroom. He gets along with everyone and is always on task, working well in individual and group settings. Other students in class follow his lead as he encourages others to be better students. Diego is a model of what Storm Grove Represents, encompassing all three of the Stingray R’s; Respectful, Responsible, Role Model. His work ethic is fully demonstrated within the classroom and on the field, representing Storm Grove in the soccer team, being a model for the phrase “Student-Athlete.” He is also a band member and plans to attend Sebastian River High School.

Kristina Puscher

Kristina Puscher is an A student who strives always to do her very best. She excels in her academic endeavors and is studying high school Geometry. Her creative and detail-oriented mindset has helped her produce excellent Science Fair Projects. 

She’s competed in the SCJH Science Fair and the Indian River Regional Science Fair all three years of her Middle School experience. She has won awards on both the school level and regional level. 

Her friends say that she is independent, thoughtful, opinionated, shy, determined, and hard-working, perhaps even a perfectionist! Kristina is not easily influenced by others, making her a strong, independent person and role model for others.

Nathaniel Alexander

Nathaniel Alexander is an exceptionally hard worker who is always prepared, ready to learn, is a good listener, and always willing to help others. He is kind, respectful, and always attentive. Nathan will ask questions and has the determination to work through difficult content. 

That kind of perseverance will serve him well in both his academic future and his life beyond school. Nathaniel is an excellent student and role model at Sebastian River Middle School. Nathaniel was also voted in as a co-captain for the Sebastian River Middle School baseball team.  

Youth of the Month Award

The “Youth of the Month Award” recognizes hard-working high school students who attain high scholastic achievement, community involvement, and leadership. 

This proven program rewards outstanding young people and provides an incentive for other youngsters to strive for equally high levels of achievement.

  • Gaelle Philippe – Sebastian River High School
  • Lucas Altamura – Sebastian River High School

Gaelle Philippe

Gaelle Philippe is an IB Diploma candidate with a 4.5 GPA and ranked 15th in her class. She is VP of the National Honor Society, a member of the student council, sales manager for the yearbook, and a Superintendent’s Advisory Committee member. 

She is Youth President of the Wabasso Haitian Church Youth and has volunteered at its Food Bank since 7th grade. Gaelle is quadrilingual in Creole, French, Spanish, and English. She co-created a club for her IB CAS Project, “Civil Rights: Table Talk Edition.” The club is designed to have open discussions about race; all voices are allowed to speak. 

Gaelle enjoys reading and taking photos. In accepting her award, Gaelle said that she likes challenges and thanked her teachers and parents for encouraging her.

Lucas Altamura

Lucas Altamura is an IB Diploma candidate with a weighted GPA of 4.575 and ranked 10th in his class. 

He is a member of the National Honor Society and has earned 4 ASE Certifications in the Automotive Academy. Additionally, he is a member of the Teens Listen Program and interviewed members of the Gifford Community to preserve local history with the Laura Riding Jackson Foundation. 

He also helped raise $200 for the Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign and St. Jude’s Hospital. Lucas is a member of the Sebastian River High School Tennis Team.  

In accepting his award, Lucas thanked The Sebastian Exchange Club, his family, teachers, and counselors during a “really tough year.”

Exchange Club of Sebastian

The Exchange Club of Sebastian is a service organization striving to make our community a better place to live, emphasizing child abuse prevention. Consider attending a noontime luncheon meeting any Wednesday, except the first Wednesday of each month, to find out more about Exchange. Visitors are always welcome.

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About Tina Hodges
Tina Hodges is a Sebastian native. After graduating from Sebastian River High School, she studied Business Management & Marketing at Indian River State College. Tina worked for Dooney & Bourke for many years before she became our VP of Sales & Marketing & Journalist. Tina joined Sebastian Daily in 2016.