Recently, 31 cadets from St. Lucie West Centennial High School Navy Junior ROTC unit toured the national Navy UDT-SEAL Museum located in Fort Pierce. Upon arrival, cadets viewed multiple Navy patrol craft, two underwater SEAL delivery vehicles, and two Apollo Spacecraft training capsules. After entering the building, the cadets were guided through a World War I exhibit by a tour guide and then toured the rest of the exhibits on their own. They saw the actual 10,000 pound, fiberglass lifeboat where Captain Richard Phillips, of the Maersk Alabama, was taken hostage by Somalia pirates and saw how the SEALs rescued him. They also saw a miniature model of Osama Bin Laden’s compound and house diagramming how the SEALs conducted their raid. After touring the museum, cadets stopped by the gift shop to purchase t-shirts and other memorabilia.
Fifty two cadets from the St. Lucie West Centennial High School JROTC visited the Fort Pierce Coast Guard station recently. The cadets saw the facilities, toured the U. S. Coast Guard Cutter Blue Fin, got “underway” aboard the forty-five foot high speed patrol boat for a ride out to the Atlantic, and toured the other patrol craft the stations uses on a regular basis. The cadets gained a real understanding of what it is like to be a member of the Coast Guard and what it means to live by their motto of “Semper Paratus,” or always ready.
Students face tough challenges every day, but 32 cadets from the St. Lucie West Centennial High School Navy JROTC faced a very tough one recently, spending spent four days at the U. S. Navy’s Parris Island Boot Camp. During their visit they were treated just like any other recruit. They learned how to follow orders with spit second response times. They learned to pay close attention to details or suffer “extra military instruction.” Of course, they received “counseling” from their drill instructor, slept in barracks, ate in the Mess Hall, trained on the obstacle course, and drilled just like Marines. On their way home, cadets stopped to visit the U.S.S. Yorktown, saw the fighter jets, visited the bridge, combat information center, engine room, and many other parts of the ship.
The St. Lucie West Centennial High School Black Talon Company competition team recently competed against 15 other Florida Navy JROTC units including two former national champs. The cadets returned successfully from Felix Varela High School in Miami with three trophies: fourth place in Armed Basic Regulation Drill, third place in Overall Drill, and first place in Armed Exhibition Drill Team. The cadets are now preparing for their next competition in February.
St. Lucie West Centennial High School’s Culinary Arts students catered and served a delicious lunch for the guests at the Criminal Justice Academy Completers celebration. The celebration was hosted at the Keiser University campus at Tradition.
On February 2, 2017, over one hundred 9th graders from St. Lucie West Centennial High School’s (SLWCHS) Freshman Academy visited the main campus of Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida. Students visited multiple class buildings, toured the football stadium, fitness center, student union, and many other facilities associated with academia and student life, and had question-and-answer sessions with helpful FAU staff. The trip was an overwhelming success, and the kids thoroughly enjoyed the time they spent on campus.
Students often struggle to maintain motivation during high school, and it is the strong belief of the SLWCHS administrative team that exposing students to the joys of college life early in their secondary-school education will help them remain focused during times of academic hardship. Indeed, many kids came away from the trip declaring that they had never known how appealing attending a major university could be, and numerous kids put FAU at the top of the list of schools to which they will eventually apply.
This is the second campus visit for the SLWCHS Freshman Academy this year. In the fall, students visited Florida International University’s main campus in Miami with similar results. During that trip, by sheer coincidence, President Barack Obama was speaking at FIU, and while the students were unable to actually see the president himself, the sense of occasion that surrounded his visit helped reinforce the message that opportunity, success and happiness are best accessed through higher education.
Saint Lucie West Centennial High School’s next Freshman Academy college visit will be to the University of Central Florida in March of this year.
St. Lucie West Centennial High School allied health teacher Elizabeth Durkee was presented a $3,000 classroom mini-grant from the Technology Education Resource and Redesign Alliance, Inc. (TERRA) at the February 25, 2014, St. Lucie County School Board meeting. TERRA is a non-profit organization governed by a Board of Directors whose mission is to mobilize the resources, knowledge, and capacity of individuals, foundations, business, and industry in shaping and facilitating educational policy, practice and research for increased achievement in a global environment. Ms. Durkee was awarded the grant due to her utilizing curriculum to create engaging, interactive activities for all levels of learners, which allows students to take responsibility for their learning success. Pictured, from left, are Superintendent Genelle Yost, Durkee, St. Lucie Public Schools teacher and TERRA board member Colleen Peterson, and School Board Chairman Debbie Hawley.
St. Lucie West Centennial High School drama students earned five trophies, including best supporting actor overall, best supporting actress and the critic’s choice award in the district 15 One Act Drama Competition. As a result , 27 Centennial students are now on their way to perform at Morsani Hall in Tampa for the State Finals Drama Competition in March and five students will be performing in the state final individual events. Pictured, front row from left, are Angel Martinez, Kaitlynn Torres, Courtnet Chronister, Amber Camacho, Brianna Lorenz, Valerie Burns, and Kristina Hoeffer. Second row, from left, are Justin Tardagno, Michael Ladewig, Passion Delgado, Suzie McKenzie, Whitney Bridges, and Dylan Akers. Back row, from left, are Francis Sabando, Brandon Nelson, Isac Benavides, and Tonii McKenzie. Not pictured, but competing, are Chelsey Vignier, Johhny Volcy, Ricardo Juez, RonJunior Carrey, and Austin Swink. Good luck Eagles!
Ron Parker, head football coach at St. Lucie West Centennial High School, was selected by the Florida Athletic Coaches Association to coach for the South team in Florida’s 2011 North/South All Star game in Sebring. Senior defensive back Ty Jackson, pictured with Parker, was also selected to participate in the game.
Students in the allied health academy at St. Lucie West Centennial High School (SLWCHS) recently participated in the HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) Winter Leadership Conference at Keiser University in West Palm Beach along with HOSA members from all over Region IX to determine those who would go on to state competition. Teacher and HOSA advisor Elizabeth Durkee coordinated events for the students. Pictured, from left, front row, are SLWCHS students Jalisa Smith, third place, Human Growth and Development; Michael Riley, third place, Dental Science; Tony-Anne Walker, third place, Home Health Aide; Victoria Hodges, first place, Speaking Skills. Back row, from left, are Sirenna Peance, fifth place, Physical Therapy; Nathalia Gomez, fifth place, Health Education team; Lindsey Harris, fourth place, Medical Law and Ethics; Joseph Motilal, fourth place, Pathophysiology; Savannah Beatty, fifth place, Home Health Aide; Alexia Stewart, fourth place, Medical Assisting; and Kristen Kohler and Rachel Cormier, fifth place, Health Education team. Not pictured is Orlando Duron, fourth place, Medical Photography. The next stop for these students is HOSA State Leadership Conference April 3-6 for the state contests.
Students from St. Lucie West Centennial High School’s Health Occupations Students Association (HOSA) earned top honors at a recent State Leadership Conference. Centennial High HOSA members Dru’ Curtis, Lisa Pressendo, Mary Hartley, Natassha Pena-Morales, Alejandra Perez-Mercado, Michael Riley, Alexia Stewart, Kedisha Christie, Jennifer Rodriguez, Danilo Perdomo, and Tony-Ann Walker had high hopes for the competition, and were not disappointed! Lisa Pressendo won first place and Mary Hartley took fourth in Massage Therapy, Dru’ Curtis took third in Medical Terminology, and Jennifer Rodriguez won a Recognition Award for her HOSA Happenings Newsletter. Dru’ Curtis and Jennifer Rodriguez will go on to national competition this summer. HOSA’s National Service Project this year is Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and the local region won the silver medal for raising $4,456.31. Pictured, from left, are Dru’ Curtis, Tony-Ann Walker, Alexia Stewart, Lisa Pressendo, Michael Riley, Jennifer Rodriguez, Kedisha Christie, Mary Hartley, and Danilo Perdomo. Not pictured are Natassha Pena- Morales, and Alejandra Perez-Mercado.
Officers with the St. Lucie County Fire Department displayed and explained the use of the department’s Air Rescue helicopter to students in Mary Higgins’ First Responder class in the Medical Academy at St. Lucie West Centennial High School during a recent visit to the fire department’s headquarters. In addition to the presentation, students also experienced a one hour practical component with the aircraft. Pictured, front row from left, are Matthew Leo, Karen Diaz, Megan DePaola, Talia Billue, Charles Pereny, and Monica Bush. Back row, from left, are Cody Trahan, Alejandro Saez, and Dominic Martin.
Each week for the last twelve years, Medical Academy students from St. Lucie West Centennial High School have had the privilege of spending part of their school day at Martin Health Systems-St. Lucie West. The variety of health professions which they can shadow and glean career information from is unending. For instance, pictured is Dr. Steven Parr, Martin Health System’s ER physician, instructing medical academy students in examination techniques in the Emergency Room of Martin Health Systems- St. Lucie West. From left, are Dr. Parr, student-patient, Reinaldo Ramos, and students Marissa Russo and Jo Jo Corsi.
Students throughout high schools in the United States may now take a Career and Technical Education program track, which allows the students in high school to take elective classes on medical career topics. The programs in Florida model what the co-curricular student organization HOSA or Health Occupations Students of America and the Florida Department of Education have created as a series of classes to start the student out learning about anatomy and physiology, medical terminology, topics such as body mechanics, bloodborne pathogens, infection control, medical errors, and information about the many medical careers and the education needed for each career. Once the student has gone through these courses, they may also take electives which gain them industry certifications in areas like Certified Nursing Assistant, Home Health Aide, EKG Technician, Administrative Medical Assisting, and First Responder, to name a few.
Students at St. Lucie West Centennial High School must demonstrate initiative, maturity, and responsibility before they are offered the opportunity to spend valuable class time at Martin Health- St. Lucie West. Debbie Markey, the manager at the facility, assists the teachers at Centennial High with preparing the students for a quality experience. She gets all of the departments on board with the needs of the students and then orients the students and discusses the importance of confidentiality and HIPAA laws. The students are transported to the facility by SLC school transportation and they are directly supervised by their teachers, both of whom are nurses, Elizabeth Durkee and Mary Higgins. While at the facility, students are assigned individually to a mentor in some area of Martin Health-St. Lucie West. Participating students are juniors and seniors in high school who have had the immeasurable opportunity to spend time in the lab, radiology, mammography, CT scan, nuclear medicine, pulmonary lab, MRI, PT, OT, registration, numerous primary care and specialty care physician’s offices, wound care, medical records, and finally, in the new ER. The staff welcomes the students and makes them feel as if they are part of the staff. For this the students and their teachers are eternally grateful.
So if you visit Martin Health-St. Lucie West, watch for a young, fresh-faced student in their crisp navy scrubs and imagine, this could be your health care provider in the future!
St. Lucie West Centennial High School Navy Junior ROTC field meet competition team participated at a field meet in Miami Beach recently. Even though the team was missing some valuable players, the cadets overcame their disadvantage and took home 10 trophies, the most the unit has ever earned. The cadets took first place in Armed Exhibition Drill and first place in Unarmed Basic Drill, and came in third place overall out of 15 schools. Congratulations to the Black Talon Navy Junior ROTC cadets.
Recently, 29 cadets from St. Lucie West Centennial High School Navy Junior ROTC toured Patrick Air Force Base in Cocoa Beach. In the morning, they visited the barracks, gym and souvenir shop. After lunch in the mess hall, cadets watched paratrooper squadron demonstration, toured the flight line fire station, had a briefing on education benefits, observed the security forces K-9 unit, and fire range simulator. Cadet Johanna Moody said the best part of the tour by far was the security forces because that is what she would like to have as a career. Pictured are the students by a helicopter.
Recently, 44 cadets from St. Lucie West Centennial High School Navy Junior ROTC took an Orientation Field Trip to the Key West Naval Air Station. The cadets stayed in the same barracks the sailors stay in. On the first day, after a long bus ride, the cadets met up with 25 other cadets from Key West High School at the beach at Fort Zachary Taylor. All of the cadets had a great time as they shared their NJROTC experiences. On the second day, the cadets toured the flight line and watched F18 Super Hornet fighter jets take off. Then they received a briefing from the Search and Rescue Helicopter Squadron, and headed over to the Key West Coast Guard Base for lunch at the Galley. It was their best meal of the whole trip. After lunch, they toured patrol boats and a Cutter and visited the Naval Base Exchange. The cadets returned to the barracks to change out of their uniforms and into civvies, and headed to downtown Key West for dinner and sightseeing in Mallory Square. Before the long bus trip back, the cadets toured the 327 foot long World War II Coast Guard Cutter Ingham. The cadets enjoyed their field trip to a Navy base, and look forward to visiting again. Pictured are the cadets with one of the aircraft on display.
ST. LUCIE COUNTY – HOSA – Future Health Professionals recently announced the 2016 recipients of the HCA – Philip R. Patton HOSA Scholarship. Fifteen students were recognized from states across the nation in which HCA-Hospital Corporation of America has hospital locations. St. Lucie Medical Center and Lawnwood Regional Medical Center are HCA hospitals located on the Treasure Coast.
Jessica Janvier is a 2016 graduate of St. Lucie West Centennial High School (SLWCHS) as well as a HOSA member representing the Allied Health CNA/EKG program. She was named as one of the 15 scholarship recipients from an applicant pool of over 600. Janvier just returned from the HOSA International Leadership Conference at the Gaylord Opryland in Nashville, TN where she was presented with her $1,000 scholarship. She plans to attend Indian River State College in August to pursue a career in nursing.
In addition to receiving this scholarship at the Leadership Conference, Janvier competed in the Personal Care Competition as a representative of the SLWCHS HOSA Chapter. Also, as a representative of SLWCHS, she received the HOSA Happenings Recognition Award and the National Service Project Recognition Award. She accepted these awards on behalf of the Chapter for raising funds and for creating community awareness for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Ms. Elizabeth Durkee, instructor at SLWCHS said, “I am just so proud of Jessica. She embodies the positive leadership qualities HOSA strives to develop in its members. She is highly motivated, demonstrates compassion, and is driven to refine her skill set in the medical field for the sake of being the best in her field.”
About St. Lucie Public Schools
The mission of St. Lucie Public Schools is to ensure all students graduate from safe and caring schools equipped with the knowledge, skills and desire to succeed. For more information visit, www.stlucieschools.org or contact Kerry Padrick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jessica Janvier, 2016 St. Lucie West Centennial High School graduate and HOSA member, attends HOSA International Leadership Conference in Nashville, Tennessee.
Students at St. Lucie West Centennial High School recently held the second annual “Sleep in a Box” overnight fundraiser for Invisible Children, a program designed to help combat the abduction of children from Uganda and Sudan who are then forced to become assassins. Eighty five students participated this year, all sleeping outside in the courtyard, in their boxes. They raised over $800 for the organization to help update radio communications in the area and build schools for displaced children. Pictued are Leedy Boyle, left, and Dustin Snyder.
St. Lucie West Centennial High School senior Nicole McHenry is one of only 16 student athletes chosen from over 700 Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) member schools to serve on the FHSAA Student Advisory Committee. The purpose of the committee is to educate student athletes on FHSAA policies. Nicole was nominated by SLWCHS Athletic Director John Messina and has played volleyball and softball for all of her four years at Centennial.
St. Lucie West Centennial High School’s Baseball Program honored outgoing Athletic Director John Messina prior to their last scheduled regular season contest against Port St. Lucie High School. The longtime AD/coach threw out the first pitch to his former catcher, Johnnie Rhoden, who is now the Head Coach at PSLHS.
Messina’s resume as a head coach includes over 400 victories, State Championships, multiple Major League players and countless collegiate scholarships at Monsignor Pace in Miami, Port St. Lucie High School, and Jensen Beach High School. As an Athletic Director, Messina brought the State Sportsmanship Award to SLW Centennial a record three times and had a great influence in bringing the FHSAA State Baseball Championships to Tradition Field. Currently, Messina is the host of the St. Lucie County Education Channel show, “Hey Coach”, where he interviews and highlights the accomplishments of local sports figures.
As Messina approaches retirement, he is anticipating the arrival of his first grandchild and is looking forward to spending time with family and being a grandpa!
He will be missed at SLWCHS!