Cohoes High School has announced its top three students for the Class of 2021.
Laraina Westcott – Valedictorian
At the top of the list is Laraina Westcott, earning the title of valedictorian with a 99.10. Grade point average (GPA).
“I have been thinking about making it into the top three, and possibly even becoming valedictorian, for many years now so I am extremely proud of myself, as well as Ruchi and Olivia,” Westcott said. “We challenged ourselves with hard courses and a college program throughout high school, and all of the hard work has clearly paid off.”
Westcott is a member of the National Honor Society, Future Ready Pathways program, International Club, Cooking Club, and Mock Trial. They will attend Buffalo University and major in psychology.
Ruchi Shah – Salutatorian
Ruchi Shah earned the title of salutatorian with a GPA of 98.82.
“I have worked so hard these past years and it finally paid off,” Shah said. “Vincent Van Gogh, a famous painter, once said ‘If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.’”
“Motivation is key when it comes to working towards success, even through the tough times,” Shah added.
Shah is a member of the National Honor Society, Future Ready Pathways program, and Cooking Club. They also played volleyball and basketball at the junior varsity and varsity levels.
Shah will attend UAlbany and plans to major in business with a minor in film.
“I would like to work within the film industry. Script writing and directing has been a dream of mine for quite some time now.”
Olivia Huneau – Honorable Mention
Olivia Huneau earned honorable mention with a GPA of 98.04.
“I feel Laraina, Ruchi, and I have all worked extremely hard to achieve these titles because of how driven we are to succeed,” Huneau said. “We put so much time and effort into our classes and participate in many different programs and activities, so seeing all of our hard work pay off is truly gratifying.”
Huneau was a key contributor to the varsity basketball, soccer, and lacrosse teams. They were also a member of the National Honor Society, Future Ready Pathways program, Varsity Club, and Character Education Club.
Huneau will attend Russell Sage College and plans to major in health sciences while participating in the 3+3 program, allowing students to earn a bachelor’s degree and a doctorate of Physical Therapy in six years. Huneau will also compete on the women’s basketball team.
“I want to thank my teachers, coaches, and family for not only allowing me to grow and learn, but also for providing support and motivation throughout my years at Cohoes High School.”
From Principal Laura Tarlo:
“These young women have worked so hard and given up so much over the years to achieve this level of academic success. Their perseverance and work ethic have led them on a path to scholarly recognition and it is with great pride that they carry these titles for the Cohoes City Schools community.”