Two girls' empowerment programs – Girls on the Run and i-tri – are helping to provide positive youth development for girls at the elementary and middle school age level – and multiple William Floyd students across the district had the opportunity to participate in these amazing programs this past year.
Nathaniel Woodhull, Tangier Smith, Moriches and William Floyd elementary schools participated in an exciting year of the Girls on the Run program, which continued to inspire and build confidence in elementary-aged students. Girls on the Run teaches positive youth development and promotes empowerment by teaching life skills through various lessons and running activities. John S. Hobart Elementary School plans to start a Girls on the Run team this upcoming fall.
Generally, teams met twice per week after school for practice, where students would complete running activities and exercises with engaging lessons and discussions to help build healthy habits as they get older. The spring season ended with a celebratory 5K run in late May held at Eisenhower Park in Westbury. This was in addition to an earlier and successful fall season.
Additionally, students from both William Paca Middle School and William Floyd Middle School have been participating in a similar program, i-tri, a goal-based, comprehensive empowerment program designed for middle school girls who participated in a curriculum of physical fitness, nutrition classes and self-esteem workshops, all affirming the positive character traits of respect, responsibility, teamwork and dedication.
The i-tri program is designed to foster self-respect, personal empowerment, self-confidence, positive body image and healthy lifestyle choices for adolescent girls. This year’s version began in February and ran through mid-July, culminating with a challenging triathlon consisting of a 300-yard open water swim, a six-mile bike ride and a 1.5-mile run.
Below is a recap of the experiences!
William Floyd Elementary School
“Each lesson builds onto the previous lessons, so the girls get to apply what they have learned during our activities,” said Brinna Sommer, Girls on the Run advisor, William Floyd Elementary School. “Some lesson themes include showing gratitude, expressing emotions, forming healthy relationships, building confidence and helping our community. They can take these lesson themes and apply them to their lives outside of Girls on the Run.”
Advisors: Brinna Sommer and Alyssa Denis. Students: Alexandra Besemer, Angelina Cartiglia, Malena Codrington, Addisyn Cummings, Angie Dantan, Danilynn Kart, Emma Magee, Channing Morgan, Angelina Randazzo, Reign Roberts, Aubree Sausa, Braelyn Schaefer and Adeline St. George.
Nathaniel Woodhull Elementary School
“We feel the girls enjoyed learning new exercises to warm up and build strength and getting the opportunity to push themselves to run longer distances on the track,” said Dani Mansi, Girls on the Run advisor, Nathaniel Woodhull Elementary School. “The girls learned strategies to communicate with others when they are both happy and upset, and they learned about the importance of teamwork.”
Advisors: Dani Mansi and Angela Boris. Students: Emelia Oppici, Khloe Knudsen, Evoleth Almaraz, Arianna Crisci, Jocelyn Gorman, Chanel Belle-Oudry, Melanie Balcarcel, Alexandria DeVoe, Juliana Belzer, Kristen Jackson, Adelina Murillo, Skyler Corcoran, Elisa Covello, Leslie Buestan Borja and Camila Anahi Garzon.
Tangier Smith Elementary School
“The girls learned how important it is to accept others and most importantly accept and embrace themselves and their differences,” said Alison Montalto, advisor, Tangier Smith Elementary School. “The program ended with a 5k on the last day. This was a triumphant moment for them. Being able to witness the emotions and expression on their faces as they crossed the finish line was such a rewarding experience for all of the coaches.”
Coaches Alison Montalto, Karla Elarde and Michelle Maloney. Students: Brianna Jean Baptiste, Jaleah Hardy, Abigail Carmichael, Cecilia Valdez, Avery Lostritto, Emma Viola, Kejsi Nexhi, Francesa G. Dima, Eileen Canas, Ryleigh Csabon, Adrianna Capitello, Miley Cardona, Jesselyn Gabino, Nevaeh Kaseroff, Gabriella Montalbano, Miabella Romard, Carly Schmidt, Makayla Stewart, Fanta Turay and Sophia Viola.
Moriches Elementary School
“Girls on the Run focuses on the whole girl,” said Alexis Biemer, who served as coach of the spring team at Moriches Elementary. “In small groups, girls would exercise their brain and bodies. They were inspired to build confidence, friendships and an understanding of how to help their world at large.”
Coaches: Alexis Biemer and Sunshine Coggiano. Students: Ava Andersen, Brianna Caporusso, Elora Fiori, Sophia Laje, Lillianna Lopez, Hailey Miller and Danica Montenegro.
William Floyd Board of Education president April Coppola recently had the opportunity to attend the culminating i-tri triathlon event in Sag Harbor. “I had the privilege of watching some pretty amazing young ladies!” said Ms. Coppola. “This program helps girls focus on their mental, physical and emotional abilities. William Floyd was so blessed to be represented with over 25 students from both WFMS and Paca! Congratulations to each and every participant on a job well done!”
William Paca Middle School students participating include Amelia Nelson, Andriana Perez, Annastayjah Lee-Rudd, Autumn Piotrowski, Charlotte Casali, Cherish Cole, Daven Anderson, Ella Escudero, Juliana Ruiz, Kaylinn Baez, Nico Febo and Nicole Putallaz.
William Floyd Middle School students participating include Ana Maria Pena Vesga, Angelie Zavala, Ceylin Birben, Drashti Jobanputra, Dulce Jasmine Galeano, Iris Garcia, Jaiden Smith, Jelena Arango Taborda, Joselyn Reyes, Kimberly Yanez, Kiya Cuevas, Michelle Hernandez Lopez, Reese Winters, Riley Winters, Shaina Rodriguez Erraez, Stephanie Martinez, Jazlynn Diaz and Veronica Rivera-Pichardo.
Please see below for additional photos of both programs!
- Hobart Elementary
- Moriches Elementary
- Paca Middle School
- Tangier Elementary
- WF Elementary
- WF Middle School
- Woodhull Elem