PITTSFIELD — Maine Central Institute has announced its top 10 seniors for the class of 2024.

Addison Verrill Cory Verrill – Peltoma Perspecti

Addison Verrill, the daughter of Cory and Jessica Verrill of Pittsfield, is valedictorian. She was the recipient of undergraduate awards in French I, Band/Choir, Honors English I, Earth and Space Science, French II, Honors History II, Biology, Algebra II, Physics, French III, and AP Humanities III.

She was selected as Manson Essayist in 2023 and received the George M. Parks and Williams College Book Awards her junior year, as well as being selected as an Expert Speaker at Ella Night her sophomore and junior year. Verrill was a member of Cross Country and Indoor Track for three years, Outdoor Track all four years, and captained all three her junior and senior year. She also participated in Instrumental/Vocal Jazz and Drama, earning Silver Awards last year in the former and a Class B Regional Championship in the One Act Festival this past spring. She is the president of Student Council and an active member of National Honor Society.

Catherine Carter Submitted photo

Catherine Carter, the daughter of Kelley and Christine Carter of Pittsfield, is salutatorian. She was selected as a Manson Essay finalist her junior year, and received an undergraduate award in French II her sophomore year. Carter has been a dancer at the Top Hat School of Dance for many years, receiving numerous dance competition awards and honors. Carter has a long term goal of becoming a psychologist and helping adolescents.

Olivia Varney Submitted photo

Olivia Varney, the daughter of Scott and Rochelle Varney of Pittsfield, received academic achievement awards in Spanish, Honors English II, PE II, and Piano, and was inducted into the VPA Honor Society. A prolific athlete, Varney received KVAC All Academic honors for soccer, indoor track, outdoor track, and tennis, and was KVAC All Conference First Team for Soccer for three years of her high school career. Varney holds the school record for most goals (101) and most goals in a season (51). She was Maine Soccer Coaches All Star Northern State Team for two years, KVAC First Team for tennis, and KVAC Player of the Year for soccer. Varney was a member of the Key Club, Kindness Kew, Student Council, Jazz Band, and National Honor Society.

Yeseul (Ashley) Hwang Submitted photo

Yeseul (Ashley) Hwang is the daughter of Shin-Ae Choi and Yong-Nam Whang of Seoul, South Korea. She was the recipient of undergraduate awards in Calculus AB and Guitar II. Hwang had perfect attendance her junior year and was a dorm prefect her senior year. She was a member of the Cross Country and Cheerleading team, earning KVAC All Academic honors. Hwang was also a member of the National Honor Society, Key Club, Student Council, Math Club, and Concert Band. Back home Ashley has spent time at Dogok Happy Village reading English to elementary school students, and has volunteered frequently at the Seoul Station Supporting Center in their soup kitchen.


Ceara Plourde Lifetouch National School Studio

Ceara Plourde, the daughter of Rhonda Woodman and Alan Plourde of Pittsfield, was the recipient of the undergraduate award for Earth and Space Science her freshman year, and was inducted into the Visual and Performing Arts Honor Society her junior year for excellence in visual art. She has also been a member of the Girls Lacrosse team. Plourde has prided herself in her strong work ethic and work excellence, best exhibited by being on the highest honor roll all quarters since her sophomore year. Visual art is Plourde’s passion, and her long term goal is to one day become an art teacher and inspire others to think and express themselves creatively.

Jayden Todaro Submitted photo

Jayden Todaro, the daughter of Anthony and Amanda Todaro of Pittsfield, was the recipient of undergraduate awards in Health her sophomore year and Project Management her junior year. Todaro was selected as a Manson Essay Finalist, achieved highest honor roll every quarter, and was honored by the National Rural and Small Town Recognition Program. Todaro was involved in Key Club, French Club, and Ski Club, and she is proud to be a first generation high school graduate.

Minhyeok (Mino) Kim Cory Verrill – Peltoma Perspecti

Minhyeok (Mino) Kim is the son of Taechu Kim and Heeseon Kwon of Cheonan, South Korea. He has had perfect attendance the past two years, and has received undergraduate awards in English as a Second Language his sophomore year and Statistics his junior year. Kim was also the recipient of the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute award and scholarship his junior year. He was a member of the Golf team, National Honor Society, Book Club, Student Council, Gardening Club, Cultural Diversity Club, and Math Team, with which Kim got fifth place at the Maine State Math Meet.

Maxine Pallante Submitted photo

Maxine Pallante is the daughter of Joseph and Denise Pallante of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She received undergraduate awards in Bossov Ballet Theatre and Spanish II her sophomore year and Game Design her junior year. This summer will mark her sixth year with Bossov Ballet. Pallante was selected as a Manson Essay Finalist, was inducted into the VPA Honor Society, received the Saint Michael’s Book Award, and became a prefect in Alumni Hall her junior year. She was a member of Student Council, Student Ambassadors, Key Club, Dorm Council, and co-head delegate of Model UN. Pallante was a Senior Officer of the National Honor Society, and was the House Chair on the Justice Committee her junior year and Supreme Court Advocate Lawyer her senior year as part of Youth and Government.

Madison Gillis Submitted photo

Madison Gillis, the daughter of Jason and Amanda Gillis of Pittsfield, has participated in Field Hockey and National Honor Society all while sustaining academic excellence. She is likely most known for her skiing career at MCI, placing 17th in the giant slalom and 11th in the slalom her junior year in the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference championship. For her efforts, Gillis was recognized as KVAC 2nd Team Alpine Skiing and KVAC All Academic her junior and senior year. Gillis had a strong showing at the state level her senior year, finishing 21st in the Class B Slalom and 20th in the Class B Giant Slalom. She finished her skiing career placing first for Slalom and second for Giant Slalom at Big Rocks Tom Chasse Memorial Race.

Anna Ortiz Submitted photo

Anna Ortiz, the daughter of Wladmir Ortiz of Cali, Colombia, and Kelty Doherty of Portland, was runner up for Manson Essayist last year and has a deep passion for environmental science and the natural world. She was one of the founders of the Boxing club, as well as a member of the Garden Club and Model UN. Her junior year Ortiz was selected to be a part of the Keller-BLOOM program focused on marine research, the Washington Youth Summit on the Environment focused on different environmental careers, and the Joint Science Education Program focused on arctic science education through Dartmouth College.


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