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North Hills Monthly

New & Notable, Jan. 2015

Dec 30, 2014 12:10PM ● By North Hills Monthly magazine

Evans City Students Create Map of the World

Shaler Area Cheerleaders win the Competitive Spirit Award
Shaler Area School District is proud to announce the Shaler Area Cheerleaders were named the WPIAL Division AAA champions in the 3rd annual Pennsylvania State Cheerleading Competitive Spirit Championship.
The Shaler Area Cheerleaders will travel to Hershey Jan. 23-24 to compete in
the PIAA Championships.

Shaler Area prepares to distribute iPads to every Middle School student
Shaler Area School District will kick off its one-to-one iPad initiative
when it hands out close to 700 iPad mini devices to every seventh- and
eighth-grader at Shaler Area Middle School on Jan. 20 and 22 from 3:45 to
7:45 p.m.
The distribution is part of the Project ACE (Advancing Classroom Education)
initiative, a mulit-phase project to Change the Culture of Learning at
Shaler Area. The iPad initiative started in 2012 and will expand to provide
iPad mini devices to every student in seventh- through 12th-grade by next
school year.

Purchase for Purpose Raises Funds for Hair Peace Charities

In December, Sigmas Conference & Event Center hosted a special shopping event, Purchase for Purpose, attended by 150 guests to benefit Pittsburgh’s Hair Peace Charities. The funds raised will be used to help women purchase wigs while in chemotherapy treatment for cancer.

Slates Receives American FFA Degree
The National Future Farms of America Organization awarded La Roche College junior Kelly Slates, of McDonald, the American FFA degree at the 2014 National FFA Convention and Expo in Louisville, Kentucky. With less than one percent of the students enrolled in FFA nationwide receiving the award each year, the degree is one of the organization’s highest honors.

Anchorpoint Counseling Ministry Raises $20,000 at Gala
Anchorpoint Counseling Ministry held its Golden Anchor Gala: Recognizing People of Hope in Our Community on October 23, with proceeds benefitting those in need of mental health services. In addition to recognizing the philanthropic efforts of its honorees, including Andrea, Pat and Therese Molyneaux; Mark & Patti Helgerman; E. Alan Bates; and Faith Geer, Pastor Jeff Sterling, Teresa Shepard and Ron Hoellein from St. Paul’s Methodist Church, the event raised more than $20,000.

King Orthodontics One of Nation’s Top Invisalign® Providers
Dr. Bryan King and Dr. Earle King have received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Invisalign®. King Orthodontics’ office has been providing Invisalign® to its patients since 1998.

Winter Receives $1,000 for Classroom from PELC
Seneca Valley Middle School science teacher Todd Winter received $1,000 for his classroom from the Public Education Leadership Community Grant through the PPG Foundation. PPG Senior Project Manager Carla Lavelle presented the check to Winter in December. As part of a future STEM project, the grant will be used to purchase supplies to build 74 rockets.

Dr. Howrilla Opens Cranberry Office
Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner Dr. Bill Howrilla has opened a new office in Cranberry at 9001 Marshall Road. Dr. Howrilla takes a holistic approach to medicine, detecting the cause of a body’s health dysfunctions and treating it naturally with vitamins and nutrition. 412-445-3168.

La Roche College Changes Transferable Credit Policy
The La Roche College Academic Senate approved changes to the college’s transferable credit policy by increasing the number of transferable credits from a community college from a maximum of 66 to 90. Students who enroll with an associate degree will also be exempt from the core curriculum.

Palmieri Named to NATP-PA Board
JoAnn Palmieri, owner and founder of Palmieri & Associates, a tax preparation and insurance planning business located in the North Hills, has been elected to the board of directors of the National Association of Tax Professionals, PA Chapter (NATP-PA).  

Yeasted Named Distinguished Professor of English
La Roche College recently recognized Sister Rita Yeasted, SFCC, Ph.D., as its first-ever Dr. Dorothy Saladiak Distinguished Professor of English. Sr. Rita has served as the English Department chair for the past 34 years.

Edward Jones Ranks No. 1 in National Survey
In’s annual survey of the nation’s six largest financial service firms, Edward Jones was ranked No. 1 for the 20th time.

Townsend Receives 2014 Leadership Award
Shaler Area High School Assistant Principal JoAnne Townsend recently received the 2014 Leadership Award from Blended Schools Network during the 64th annual PASCD Conference in Hershey for her work with the Shaler Area Academy.

Cranberry Receives Award for Use of Social Media
Cranberry Township’s use of social media was awarded first place in an annual Township Citizen Communication Contest held by the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors. The contest attracted entries from 42 townships in eight separate categories.

SV Wins at Westinghouse Contraption Competition
A team of Seneca Valley Senior High School students recently competed in the Westinghouse Contraption Competition at the Carnegie Science Center and won the Most Mechanical Award, finishing first among the 34 high schools that competed. Team members include Adam Johanknecht, Andrew Lingenfelter, Emerson Maloney, Mike Palaski, Tanner Quiggle and Kobie Rankin.

ALT Honored for 20 years of Conservation Excellence
The city and county has declared Nov. 22, 2014, as Allegheny Land Trust Day in honor of the trust’s 20 years of conservation excellence. ALT will also receive $200,000 over three years from the Heinz Endowments to conduct a community land trust feasibility study to serve the Pittsburgh region.

SA Students Fill Stockings for Light of Life
Shaler Area High School students in the Helping Hands group held a school wide donation drive in December to fill stockings with personal care items for those in need. Their donation was given to Light of Life Ministries on the North Side.

Cooper Named 2015 PA Teacher of the Year
Fox Chapel Area High School teacher Mairi Cooper has been named Pennsylvania’s 2015 Teacher of the Year, an announcement made during the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Keystone Awards of Excellence program in December. Cooper was introduced by FCAHS senior and orchestra member Eli Ziff as part of the ceremony. She is currently the orchestra director at FCAHS and has been teaching in the district since 2001.

Evans City Students Create Map of the World
Evans City Schools’ first- through sixth-grade art students worked collaboratively to create a giant map of the world by studying portraiture in art class and connecting their learning to math and social studies.

Legend Financial Advisors, Inc.® Selected as a Best Place to Work
The Pittsburgh Business Times has named Legend Financial Advisors, Inc.® to its annual “2014 Best Places to Work in Western Pennsylvania” list published in October, making this the firm’s ninth such honor. 

SA Cheerleading Squad Wins Cheer Competition for Second Year
The Shaler Area Varsity Competition Cheerleading Squad returned to the Pennsylvania Cheer and Dance Competition in December and won their division, beating all other varsity squads in all divisions to be named grand champions. They were also given the Best Choreography award. The squad is led by Phyllis Schatz, assisted by Becky Troppman.

Burley Places First in AT&T Competition
In November, La Roche College senior Toni Burley, of New Castle, was a first-place winner at the 2014 Smart Tag App Hackathon powered by AT&T. She placed first in the Best Use of IBM Technologies from a Student Team and received $1,000. Burley is an information technology major.

Winters Named Winner of Calendar Photo Contest
Seneca Valley senior Trianna Lynn Winters was selected as one of 12 winners in the American Association of Physics Teachers National Photo Contest. Her photo, which was taken in the Lower Antelope Canyon in Arizona last year, was published in the AAPT 2015 calendar.

FC and SSA Students Attend World Affair Institute
In November, students from Fox Chapel Area High School and Shady Side Academy represented the Rotary Club of Fox Chapel Area at the 44th World Affairs Institute for Student Leaders in Pittsburgh. Attending were seniors Margaux Everingham, Zach Kiehn, Sophie Roe, and Matthew Silverman; juniors Amanda Puthenpurayil and Xi Xu; sophomores David Han, Moira McCormick and Ellen Pil; and freshman Emelyn Broniek. They were accompanied by teacher Jennifer Klein. Attending from Shady Side Academy were sophomores Maggie Mayer and Anya Prasad and history department chair Kyle Smith. The Rotary Club of FCA coordinated the selection of students and paid each student’s registration fee.

DMS Named State Finalist in Samsung Contest
Dorseyville Middle School has become a Pennsylvania state finalist in the $2 million Samsung Solve for Tomorrow contest. Three teachers received a professional development course from PBS TeacherLine and the school received two Samsung Galaxy® Tabs. DMS is one of four schools in Pennsylvania to become a state finalist.

SV Places on College Board’s Honor Roll
Seneca Valley is one of 547 school districts in the U.S. and Canada being honored by the College Board with placement on its fifth annual AP® District Honor Roll. SV received this honor for increasing student access to advanced placement coursework while maintaining or increasing the percentage of students earning scores of 3 or higher on AP exams.

SA Elementary School Partners with PNC Bank to Establish Program
Shaler Area Elementary is partnering with PNC Bank to establish a School Bank Program that will enable Shaler area families with students in fourth- to sixth-grade to sign up for a PNC Bank savings account. The students will then have the opportunity to deposit any amount at the School Bank on designated banking days.

PASC Honors Harmon
The Pennsylvania Association of Student Councils presented Seneca Valley freshman Shirlann Harmon the Dale D. Hawley Award during its annual PASC state conference in November. Harmon has been a delegate in Student Council since seventh grade.

FCAHS Students Place at International Model UN Conference
Fox Chapel Area High School senior Frank Lou and sophomores Mihir Garimella and Martin Taxay won a verbal commendation at the Princeton Model United Nations Conference. Approximately 1,100 students from 58 schools along the eastern seaboard, as well as students from Greece, Turkey and China, participated in the conference. 

Gruber and Simakas Elected to La Roche College Board of Trustees
The La Roche College board of trustees welcomed new members alumnus William F. Gruber of Gibsonia and George Simakas, CIMA®, of the North Hills. Gruber is the founder and president of Broker’s Settlement Services Inc. and Simakas is co-director of Graystone Consulting’s Pittsburgh/Cleveland team.

FC Students Place at North Catholic Forensic Tournament
Fox Chapel Area High School senior Frank Lou and sophomore Jeremy Rodrigues both received Outstanding Performance plaques in Impromptu Speaking and were recognized as being among the top five finishers in their event at the Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic High School Forensic Tournament held in December. The team of juniors Priyanka Shah and Daly Trimble won first place in Public Forum Debate and had an undefeated record. Juniors David Humphrey and Julia Lynch won second place in Public Forum Debate. Also, as a team, FCAHS students won the second place sweepstakes plaque in the large school category.

Medicine Stop Pharmacy MarCom Gold Award Winner
The Medicine Stop Pharmacy has received a MarCom Gold Award for their brand and logo redesign. The MarCom competition has about 6,000 entries per year and is sponsored by the Association of Marketing and Communications Professionals. The logo was created by 4CDesignWorks in Pittsburgh.

FC Students Place in Forensic Tournaments
Fox Chapel Area High School senior Rishi Mirchandani was a quarterfinalist in Impromptu Speaking at the Patriot Games Classic Forensic Tournament held in December at George Mason University. In the Upper St. Clair Novice Forensic Tournament, held in November at Fort Couch Middle School, sophomores Jeremy Rodrigues won first place and Ellen Pil won second place in Impromptu Speaking. Sophomore Mihir Garimella won fifth place in the Lincoln-Douglas Debate.

SV Academic Games Advances in On-Sets Tournament
The Seneca Valley Academic Games Team had an outstanding performance during the Onsets Tournament in November at Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum in Oakland. The first place team includes Renhan Xu, Parker Logue, Zach Garcia, Anoop Savio and Dora White. Two teams tied for second place; the first team includes Sebastian Wary, Jack Veverka, Matt Murphy, Nick Folino and Nate Trost, and the second team includes Arya Nayak, Alex Kramer, Benaifer Sepia, Simren Jayaraman and Evan Howley. The third place team includes Jason Hartenstein, Ty Brinkley, Cameron Ailes, Olivia Demetter and Vibha Hodachalli. The fifth place team includes Sarah McKinley, Brenna Wrubel, Megan Bablak, Evan Prazenica and Ananya Rao. National qualifiers are Zach Garcia, Matt Murphy, Anoop Savio, Dora White, Adam Raible, Connor Anderson, Renhan Xu, Ty Brinkley, Vibha Hodachalli, Arya Nayak, Simren Jayaraman, Ananya Roa, Megan Bablak, Jack Veverka, Sebastian Wary, Dilini Ranaweera and Claire Reynolds. Perfect scores were earned by Zach Garcia, Matt Murphy, Anoop Savio and Dora White. The Middle Division team national qualifiers are Francesca Citrone, Adam Corrigan, Angelo Gionnotta, Jose Ordonez, Vinya Ponugoti, Rishin Sharma, Dean Smith and Ryan Vogel. In the Junior Division, Kyle Cinderich and Urvi Gupta qualified for nationals. Shane Ruiz in the Senior Division also qualified for nationals.