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While most high school students are happy to leave school when the bell rings, Rosmary Reyes takes extra classes, which sometimes keep her as late as 6 p.m.
Now that extra time is about to pay off.
Reyes, a student at Business, Computer Applications & Entrepreneurship High School in Cambria Heights, is set to graduate after just three years.
“I feel like as soon as I get out of high school, I can get into the real world and closer to my dream of being a lawyer,” Reyes said. “The faster the better.”
Reyes, 16, maintains a 91 percent average in school, is a member of Arista, the National Honor Society, and is in the running to be her school’s valedictorian or salutatorian. She speaks fluent Spanish, and also knows American Sign Language, which Reyes learned so she could communicate with her deaf cousins.
Besides her academics, Reyes participates in a great deal of extracurricular activities and volunteer work.
She is president of the school’s student government, editor of the yearbook, a member of the journalism and the recycling clubs, and she also tutors students who need help in specific subjects. Reyes volunteers at the annual high school fair for eighth-graders and the college fair.
Outside school, Reyes is a New York Cares team leader and has volunteered to help many causes, including working in a soup kitchen and taking part in a coat drive for a senior citizens home.
“It’s not just for academic achievement or looking better for my resume,” Reyes said. “I like [volunteering] because I want to do it. I like helping people and being in leadership roles.”
Even before high school, Reyes was an exceptional student. She received student of the month and student of the year awards from M.S. 61. Reyes pushes herself to do more, because of her philosophy to stay motivated.
“When you are tired and just want to give up, you should just stop for a moment and imagine what you can achieve if you try just a little bit more,” Reyes said.
But her ideals aside, Reyes recognized that she wouldn’t have been able to achieve all of her accomplishments without her family as a backbone of support.
“[I] give thanks to my parents for always giving me the resources I need, and my sister for always giving me the push I need to achieve my goals.”
Reyes is now waiting to hear from St. John’s University, where she plans to continue her education. She then wants to go to law school to become a civil litigator or human rights lawyer.
“I always found a true passion in it,” Reyes said. “The thing I like about lawyers is that they get to help people who may not be able to help themselves.”