October 3, 2002

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Achievement, merit scholar semifinalists at YSHS
Mrit scholar semifinalists
Yellow Springs High School scholars, from left, in front: Ashlee Cooper and Keira Philipp-Schnurer; back row: Matt Zaremsky and Brenden Willis. Not shown is Eli Visbal.

Five Yellow Springs High School seniors were recently recognized for their academic achievements by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

Named a semifinalist in the National Achievement Scholarship Program was Ashlee Cooper. Cooper has participated in volleyball, basketball (named MVP during her sophomore year) and track and field. She enjoys attending weekly “United Society” meetings, which she says have helped her become more aware of other people and their cultures.

Cooper was awarded the Kodak Young Leaders and Venture Scholar for Academics awards last summer. After high school, she plans to attend a university in California, major in biology and pursue a career as a biology professor or physician specializing in obstetrics and gynecology. She is the daughter of Jill and Tony Cooper.

Named semifinalists in National Merit Scholarship competition were Keira Philipp-Schnurer and Matt Zaremsky.
Philipp-Schnurer attended Nightingale Montessori from second grade through eleventh grade. As a sophomore and junior, she attended Clark State Community College part time, taking two classes every quarter in addition to her regular high school curriculum.

This year, as a senior, Philipp-Schnurer will be taking classes full time at CSCC, which amounts to 15 credit hours for the fall quarter. When not in school, she studies ballet and jazz dance with Gary Geis’s School of Dance in Springfield; volunteers part time at the Antioch Review; works part time at Dino’s Cappuccinos and as a tutor at CSCC.

Philipp-Schnurer says her passion is English; she reads voraciously and writes fiction and poetry occasionally. Her career intention is to work as a book editor. She is the daughter of Jeanne Philipp and John Schnurer.

Matt Zaremsky has been an active member of the video and drama clubs while in high school. He has acted in four of the Drama Club’s productions, has written and directed the annual one-act plays and has been inducted into the International Thespian Society. He has also acted in eight of the YS Kids’ Playhouse productions and the Antioch College Summer Shakespeare Theater.

He plays the cello in the high school orchestra, is a member of the Springfield Youth Symphony and was a member of the cross country team for four years. A member of Temple Sholom in Springfield, Zaremsky has served as president and treasurer of its youth group and has taught Hebrew to elementary age students for four years. Making movies and cartooning are his favorite hobbies.

The National Achievement Scholarship Program is an annual competition sponsored by the National Merit Scholar Corporation for black high school students. Semifinalist status in both National Achievement Scholar and National Merit Scholar competition is based on PSAT/NMSQT scores. Semifinalists have the opportunity to continue in the competition for the Achievement Scholarship and Merit Scholarship awards that will be offered next spring.

Recognized as Commended Scholars in the National Merit Scholarship Program were Robert Brenden Willis and Eli Visbal.

Willis, the son of Phyllis Turner and Mark Willis, has lived in Yellow Springs his entire life. After graduation, he plans to work for a year or two before attending Ohio University.

Eli Visbal, the son of Jane and Miguel Visbal of Yellow Springs, enjoys playing sports and is captain of the football team. He has two younger brothers, Miguel and Alex.

After high school, Visbal plans to study physics at a university, followed by graduate work toward his doctorate in physics. His career goal is to become a research scientist in physics or engineering.