The Long Island Youth Summit

Emily Winston, Arts and Entertainment Editor

On April 4th, ten Ward Melville students, and Social Studies teacher Allison Kane, attended the 5th Annual Long Island Youth Summit. The day-long conference fostered creativity and recognized outstanding student essays. Before attending the conference, students submitted essays on a variety of social-economic issues in modern society. Reports, authored by either one or two students, pinpointed hindrances and suggested solutions. Essays were graded on research, creativity, and analysis. In particular, the inclusion of creative solutions and a pragmatic perspective were emphasized.

Finalists in the competition were invited to discuss ideas at Dowling College. Experts offered insight on topics in their respective fields. For competitor Dinko Franceschi, this unforgettable interaction provided a perspective, mere fact and research couldn’t embody. He exclaimed, “I understood the hazards from waste disposal, runoff and nitrates, but now I understand the small actions to minimize these ramifications.” Seniors Eric Hu and Eric Zhang collaborated on an essay about the economics, community, and housing of Long Island. Eric Hu reflected on his second year participating in the Long Island Youth Summit, “Being part of the Long Island Youth Summit has been both a rewarding and significant experience in our education. Learning about various preservation and economic functions in school has really given me a great platform for understanding, but being part of a committee and actually discussing these subjects in a context that directly applies to everyday life is truly an extraordinary extension to a holistic education.” Also a second-year participant in this competition, Eric Zhang, remarks that the Long Island Youth Summit “was an awesome way for us to practice our speaking skills and make connections in a professional context.” In addition, keynote speakers questioned healthcare services offered to different social classes, encouraging out-of-the-box thinking and reasoning.

At the end of the conference, several Ward Melville students were named winners in their respective categories. Recognized nominees include Katerina Baduk, Monica Rahman, Dinko Franceschi, Benjamin Winston, Natalia Eugebe and Michelle Urrutia. They received a scholarship to Dowling College and a four week paid internship at Long Island Jewish Hospital. Overall, the conference was a great experience which promoted science, writing, creativity, and discussion. For more information about this conference visit the website: