WEIRTON - The top students of the Weirton Madonna Class of 2014 were announced prior to Sunday's commencement exercises at St. Joseph the Worker Church.
Leading the 48 members of the graduating class are Valedictorian Alisandra Rateau Welch and Salutatorian Mariah Lee Mott. Rounding out the top 11 are Cole Andrew Roberts, Anthony Joseph Antinone, Andrew James Higgins, Alan Torres Alimario, Francesca Maria Basil, Gianna Marie Anile, Mark Alexander Colantonio, Rachel Ann Gaughenbaugh and Sierra Danyiel Bone.
Welch is the daughter of Janeen (Rateau) Welch of Weirton and Thomas Welch of Weirton. She is a member of St. Paul Parish, where she has been an altar server for nine years and a lector for four years. She served one year as class president, Rotary Interact president, Outdoor Adventure Club vice president and Pro-Life Club treasurer. Welch also is a four-year member of the Prayer, Art and SADD clubs and a member of the National Honor Society and the JETS team. She is a three-year member of the golf team and a four-year varsity letterman and co-captain in tennis and was a state tennis tournament qualifier. Welch has accumulated more than 500 hours of community service, was selected as Madonna's representative to the Hugh O'Brien Youth Leadership Conference, Youth Leadership Weirton program, Judicial Scholars, WVU Governor's School and Rhododendron Girls State where she was chosen as an Outstanding Citizen. Welch was selected to attend the Summer Academy of Mathematics and Science at Carnegie Mellon University for the past two years, and was named the 2013 Academy Fellow by Siemens Corp. for outstanding academic achievement and dedication. She has been named a National Merit Finalist, an EQT Scholar of Excellence, the December 2013 Elks Teen of the Month and the Daughters of the American Revolution Good Citizen. Welch was a recipient of the Tin Mill Credit Union, Upper Ohio Valley Italian Heritage Festival, ESA Foundation, Mountaineer Future, Gay Larsen Education Trust and EQT scholarships. She has been accepted to Carnegie Mellon University and will major in chemical engineering.
Mott is the daughter of Lee and Christy Mott of Weirton. Along with her honors and advanced placement courses, she has also been dually enrolled with Wheeling Jesuit University for two years. She is a member of St. Paul Parish. She has been a member of Pro-Life Club, JETS, Outdoor Club, Travel Club, and Interact Club, of which she is vice president. Mott volunteers at the Community Bread Basket and serves Thanksgiving dinner at the Weirton Senior Center. She has volunteered her freshman, sophomore, and senior years as a member of Lend a Hand for Appalachia, returning to the southern region of West Virginia to assist the less fortunate. For four years, she has volunteered in U.S. Steel's Earth Day program. Her community service also includes volunteering at East Liverpool City Hospital in various departments. As a member of the Travel Club in her junior year, she took a two-week educational tour of Switzerland, Italy, and France. Some of her accomplishments include being a member of the United States Achievement Academy and being recognized for both mathematics and science merit awards. She is also a two-year member of National Honor Society. Mott will be attending the West Virginia University Honors College in the fall to major in biology. She plans to continue her passion for volunteer work throughout her college years. After graduating from WVU, she plans on attending medical school with aspirations of becoming an anesthesiologist.
Roberts is the son of Steve and Kris Roberts of Follansbee.
He is a member of St. Paul Parish. He attended the former St. John the Worker School in Wellsburg and St. Paul School in Weirton before coming to Madonna.
While at Madonna, he has participated in Wheeling Jesuit courses for the past two years and also took AP courses this past year to get his college career started.
Roberts has been accepted as a member of the National Honor Society, Who's Who Among American High School Students and the United States Achievement Academy.
He enjoys volunteer work, especially his visits with senior citizens at Weirton's Freedom Place Towers as part of the Interact Club. He has also volunteered for the Community Bread Basket, the Table of Hope, the Brooke County Public Library in Wellsburg and with Vacation Bible School programs at local churches. He serves as vice president of Madonna's Pro-Life Club and is a member of the Prayer Club and SADD. He has been a four-year member of Madonna's golf team, played on the JV basketball team for two years and joined the tennis team this year, winning the regional No. 3 doubles title. Outside of school, he works part-time at Spicy Gringos restaurant in Wellsburg.
Roberts recently applied for and received a full scholarship from Alcoa Corp. to attend the NatureBridge environmental studies program at Yosemite National Park this summer. He was one of only 24 students selected to receive this honor out of 160 applicants in 18 countries. This year he also received the EQT Students of Excellence Scholarship, the Arrupe Award for Community Service, the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston scholarship, the W.Va. Promise scholarship and the Wheeling Jesuit High Honors Award to help pay for his college education.
This fall, Roberts will attend Wheeling Jesuit University where he plans to major in Environmental Studies and Sustainability.
Antinone is the son of Suzie and Anthony Antinone of Weirton. He is a member of the National Honor Society, a four-year member of the football, basketball and baseball teams, accumulating a total of eight varsity letters. He was part of the 2012 state championship baseball team and the 2013 state championship football team. During his senior year, he was co-captain of the varsity basketball team. Antinone was named to the OVAC All-Academic Team all four years of high school, was the school recipient of the 2013 Wendy's High School Heisman, an ambassador at the 2012 Hugh O'Brien Youth Leadership seminar. He is a member of St. Joseph the Worker Church, where he is an altar server and a Vacation Bible School counselor. Other activities include SADD, Junior Engineering Technology Society, Prayer, Pro-Life and Interact clubs. He plans to attend Ohio State University where he has been accepted into the Sports and Wellness Scholars program and major in engineering.
Higgins is the son of Ronald and Sharon Higgins. He has been a four-year member of Interact, the Prayer Club, the Pro-Life Club and SADD. He has been selected as a JETS team participant, the National Honor Society and the Young Judicial Scholars program. He has served three years as class vice president, played golf for two years, football for two years, baseball for two years and basketball for four years. He is an OVAC academic scholar athlete and a member of St. Paul Parish where he is a greeter. Higgins will attend West Virginia University and major in engineering.
Alimario is the son of Alain and Cynthia Alimario of Weirton. He is the recipient of the 2014 Aquinas Medal and recently recognized by the Catholic Daughters of the Americas as the state level first-place winner in the National Education Contest Division III Music category. He is a 12-year piano student, relieving superior ratings at the West Liberty University Music Club spring piano auditions. He is a four-year member of the tennis and gold teams, receiving three letters in tennis and qualifying for the state tournament. He was named to the 2011-2013 All-Conference Academic Team by the OVAC, is the Drama Club president, performing in four school plays. He also is president of Pro-Life, treasurer of the National Honor Society and Interact, vice president of SADD, a two-year member of Madonna's Jazz Band, and a member of the Prayer and Outdoor clubs. He has been named to the National Society of High School Scholars and Who's Who Among All-American Scholars, is listed in the U.S. Achievement Academy as a National Sciences Award nominee and was selected to be a National Scholar at the 2012 National Young Leaders Conference. He has served on student council, volunteered at the Weirton Senior Center, with St. Joseph-St. Paul VBS, and the Weirton Medical Center Auxiliary. He is a member of St. Joseph the Worker Parish where he has been an altar server and Eucharistic minister. Alimario will attend WVU to major in exercise physiology.
Basil is the daughter of Dr. John and Mary Basil of Weirton. She was senior class president, and president of her freshman and junior class, president of the National Honor Society, vice president of Ski Club, treasurer of Outdoor Club, editor for The Madonna Trumpet, Eucharistic administrator and Mass reader fo Madonna school masses. She was a member of homecoming court and traveled with the International Travel Program to Switzerland, Italy and France. Basil is a three-year letter winner in track and field and lettered for the varsity and competitive cheering squad. She has volunteered at numerous organizations in the area, was selected to attend the Hugh O'Brien Youth Leadership Conference, has received the Rotary Youth Leadership Award, participated in Youth Leadership Weirton and has been the Elks Senior Teenager of the Month. She has received scholarships from WVU, the Promise Scholarship and First Choice America Community Federal Credit Union. She is employed at Hollister and Co. and is a member of the National Italian American Foundation. She has been accepted to WVU as a second semester student and will major in business and economics.
Anile is the daughter of Jeff and Lori Anile. She is a member of the Prayer Club, Pro-Life, Outdoor, Interact and Pep clubs, a member of the National Honors Society, secretary of Ski Club, president of SADD, editor of the 2013-2014 yearbook and class treasurer. Anile participated in the 2013 Rhododendron Girls State and the 2013-2014 Judicial Scholars program. She is a three-year member and letterman in cheering, four-year member and two-year letterman in volleyball and a four-year member and letterman of the track team, where she won the 2013 4x4 relay state championship. Anile plans to attend WVU and major in exercise physiology.
Colantonio is the son of Mark and LuAnne Colantonio. He is a winner of the Voice of Democracy competition, was named student of the month, recipient of the OVAC All-Conference Academic award, nominated to the Congress of Future Medical Leaders and selected to the City of Weirton Youth Business Conference. He is a member of National Honors Society, JETS, Prayer Club, Ski Club and the Judicial Scholars program. He has been vice president and representative of his class. His volunteer work includes the Community Bread Basket, Weirton Geriatric Center and coaching basketball for St. Joseph the Worker Grade School. He has participated in golf as a four-year letterman, was a member of the 2010 state championship team and finished fourth and sixth respectively in the 2012 and 2013 state golf tournament, along with being awarded all-state honors both years. He will attend WVU and study engineering and then law.
Gaughenbaugh is the daughter of George and Jackie Gaughenbaugh of Weirton. She is a member of St. Paul's Parish. Besides being a member of the National Honor Society and participant in the Weirton Youth Leadership program she was also a member of the varsity cheering squad for two years and lettered both those years. She was also selected for the Homecoming Court. She is the president of the Outdoor Club and Ski Club and the secretary of the Interact and Pep Clubs. She is also a member of the Prayer Club, SADD, Art Club, and Literary Magazine.
She also volunteers at the St. Paul's Fish Fry, Madonna Cheering Camp, Community Bread Basket, and participated in Lend a Hand for Appalachia for the past two years. She has also helped in serving Thanksgiving Dinner for the past seven years for the Weirton Ministerial Association. Gaughenbaugh has chosen West Virginia University where she will be majoring in behavioral and occupational therapy for special needs children.
Bone is the daughter of Dan and Heather Bone of Follansbee. She has been a member of the Pep Club, Ski Club, SADD, and vice president of the Prayer Club. She was named Spanish I and Chem I Student of the Year. She is a member of the National Honor Society, National Honor Society of High School Students, National Honor Roll and the National Achievement Academy. She was also in Madonna's Honors Program, Homecoming Queen and a Spotlight Scholar Award Winner at Washington Jefferson College. She has been a member of the track team, the state runner-up and state cheer championship squads. She also has received OVAC All conference Academic Award. Bone plans to Washington Jefferson
The other members of the graduating class are: Austin Michael Bell, Garrett Marshall Bever, Marcello Antonio Biondillo, William Scott Bowser II, Travis Steven Brown, Dominic Michael Clements, Ross Raggi Comis, Christina Marie Conforti, Matthew Francesco Conforti, Breanna Nicole Dalfol, Hannah Marie Enos, Tyler Scott Ewusiak, Luciano Joseph Fuscardo, Thomas Grant Gianni, Brianna Rae Green, Nathan Richard Guio, Gabriel Alexander Hypes, Geuntae Kim, Shelby Renee' Kirk, Samuel Louis Licata, Shain Michael Livada, Alayna Catherine Macaluso, Joshua Todd Martin, Stephen Michael Maus II, Eliott Andrew Nero, Dustin Blaine Parr, Amanda Sue Paul, Emily Boyer Pietranton, Emilie Marie Pollard, Adam Garrett Robertson, Michael William Rogers, Gabrielle Victoria Sellitti, Joshua Aaron Smearman, Emily Dawn Stoneking, Anthony Joseph Thomaselli IV, Ryan James Watts and Kelsey Elizabeth Weaver.