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WATERTOWN — Since moving from IHC to Watertown High at the start of her freshman year, Sophia L. Renzi has made many discoveries about herself and her passions.

According to Sophia, going to Watertown has opened her up to many different types of people and has really taken her out of her shell, making her better able to talk to those she doesn’t know.

“It’s really given me a better social aspect of my life where I can see people and say hello and feel comfortable around new people,” she said. “Which will come in handy for me to go to college where there are thousands of people I’ve never met before.”

In the fall, Sophia will attend the College of the Holy Cross, a private Jesuit liberal arts college in Worcester, Massachusetts, about 40 miles west of Boston. Sophia has yet to officially declare her major, undecided at this time, but hopes to do biology and psychology as a double major or have one as a major and the other as a minor, with the ultimate goal of become a pediatrician.

Although she’s always had an interest in the medical field, it wasn’t until a recent internship with Watertown Pediatrics as part of her New Visions class at BOCES that she realized that was what she was all about. wanted to spend his life doing.

“It was just an amazing opportunity to sit down with the doctors, talk with them, and they even let me go around and talk with patients and families,” she said. “I knew exactly that was what I wanted to spend my life doing; do what they do, help children in this age group.

Sophia said the main reason she even did New Visions was because they allowed students to do internships during the school year, which she described as helpful because now she’s not getting in. blind university.

“I don’t care if I want to be a nurse or a medical assistant, do I want to be a doctor?” she says. “I know exactly what my track will be, I know exactly what my classes will be in college to get there. It’s really helpful to have a baseline for what your next steps will be in the years to come.

As her next step after graduation quickly approaches, Sophia said she feels confident in her abilities to handle the workload ahead, although for her, she said she had still feel like a sophomore like it did when COVID first hit, as the past few years have passed in limbo.

“Everyone I spoke to, I feel like it all happened so quickly,” she said. “But I’m excited, I’m counting the days to have summer vacation and go to college. High school has been a tough journey at times with COVID and I think I’m just excited for a fresh start.

His hope, like many students whose school life has been turned upside down along with their social life, is that COVID will not interfere with his college studies. Prior to her departure, she will work two jobs this summer, currently at the Crystal Restaurant in Public Square and will start another job at Good Fellos in Sackets Harbor next month. Besides working, Sophia said she plans to catch up on some reading she couldn’t fit in this year with the workload, hanging out with her friends and jet-skiing, making the most of it. of her last summer before college. She enjoys playing soccer and hopes to play intramurals or just basic college stuff to stay fit and have fun. In addition to reading, she said she loves photography, another passion she discovered after moving to Watertown. She said she takes pictures of almost any random thing she sees that she likes the look of.

“IHC never offered a photography class and I needed an extra class when I went,” she said. “I saw pictures on the little papers and I was like, ‘Okay, I’ll give it a try.’ I was in Intro to Photography and reached Photography 4 since junior year – just found out I absolutely loved it.

She said she started creating portfolios once every two terms and submitting them to shows. Recently, she has received numerous awards for her photography, including the “Art that Inspires Action Award” and “First Place Portfolio” from the Tri-County Art Show, as well as the 2021 School Silver Key Portfolio and Winner of the Golden Key photo for outstanding achievement. in photography. She said she hopes to pursue her newfound passion in college if she is able.

Always with a love of school and learning growing up, things never changed in that regard for Sophia. She said she always strived to be a student with high distinction with an average of 95 and over.

She was a member of the National Honor Society of Watertown High School, the National Technical Honor Society of BOCES, and back at IHC she was awarded a scholarship for scholars and considers her greatest achievement at this day is to enter university.

Although the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted so many things, creating many difficulties along the way, it actually made her transition to a new school a little easier.

“We were hybrid, so I was only there with less than half of the school,” she said. “It wasn’t really that different. It was the same class size I was used to i.e. 10 people or less so it wasn’t that big of a difference other than you weren’t really with the people.

In reality, it was about learning to learn everything on her own, including AP calculus and chemistry, and there were no finals in her freshman year. When it came time for this final year, with her teachers, she always taught herself due to difficult course material, and to top it off, finals came back strong to end the year.

“It was kind of like a sudden awakening after two years,” she said. “It was just one of those types of situations where you’re like, ‘wow, I really have to sit down and study,’ and that’s what I did.”

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