June 15, 2017 — Mars Area graduates Claire Staresinic and Evan Deddo have been named valedictorian and salutatorian of the Class of 2017, respectively.
Claire Staresinic served as co-president of National Honor Society, Student Council representative to the School Board, Speech & Debate Team co-chair, and Hometown High-Q Team captain. She was a member of Honors Band and National German Honor Society (Delta Epsilon Phi) Chapter; and, was a four-year cast member in Mars Area High School’s annual fall play.
Staresinic is a 2017 National Merit Scholarship Program Finalist and an AP Merit Scholar with Honor. She was named a 2017 Trib Total Media Outstanding Young Citizen Program Gold Medalist as well as to the 2017 American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) National German Exam for High School Students Level 4 Bronze Presidential Honor Roll.
She received first place in the Poetry Recitation category at the 2017 Three Rivers German Day; took first place overall (with graduate Abby Parsons) in the Duo Interpretation category at the Pennsylvania High School Speech League (PHSSL) District 2 Qualifier; and was selected for the 2016 PMEA All-State Band.
She is a National Elks Foundation Scholar and a recipient of the PEO (Philanthropic Educational Organization) International Star Scholarship, Ralph B. Canterbury Scholarship (Clearview Federal Credit Union), Student Council Scholarship, High School Service Award, and a Distinction Diploma Seal.
Staresinic has participated in Junior Olympic Archery for the past seven years. In 2015, she took first place in the Female Cadet Recurve Bow competition at the Pennsylvania State Archery Association (PSAA) Indoor Championship.
In the community, she has volunteered at Mars Home for Youth, Animal Friends, Family Psychological Associates, and Clarion Psychiatric Center.
Staresinic will attend the Honors Program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she plans to major in pre-med.
Evan Deddo was a member of National Honor Society and a four-year letterman on Mars Area High School Boys Varsity Cross Country Team. He holds a Pennsylvania “You Be the Chemist” Challenge state title and has participated in the MathCounts competition at the state level.
Deddo is a 2017 National Merit Scholarship Program Finalist and was selected for PMEA All-State Orchestra in both 2015 and 2016. He is the recipient of the 2017 Butler Road Race Inc. Scholarship and The Edward & Bethel Kean Foundation STEM Scholarship.
He received the National Federation of Music Clubs (NFMC) President’s Gold Cup for Piano Solo and has earned a “Superior” rating in each of his 12 years of participation in the adjudication program. In addition, Deddo is a principal violinist with the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra, which is performing a four-city concert tour in Spain this summer.
Deddo will attend the University of California — Berkeley as a physics major.
For more information on the valedictorian, salutatorian and honors selection process, click here.