Superintendent’s Spotlight: Anthony Velazquez


Superintendent’s Spotlight: Anthony Velazquez

October 26, 2023

Anthony Velazquez had his share of challenges during middle school and the first couple years of high school, but he has found his path and has been engaged and motivated in school ever since. He has found his dream and he is putting plans into action to accomplish it. 

Anthony is a resilient person. 

One of the competencies in the Warwick Valley Central School District’s Portrait of a Graduate is Resilient Individual. Resilient Individuals make good choices that enable them to persevere when challenges arise. They choose to maintain a healthy body and mind, and surround themselves with supportive, positive people. They stay goal-oriented and tackle tasks through successful planning. Resilient Individuals understand that self-reflection and advocacy are keys to growth and self-improvement.

“Anthony had a tough time transitioning from middle school into high school. Working from home on a computer presented a lot of challenges for him,” said Director of Counseling Mary Fox. “So, when he became a ninth grader he worked really hard. And, then last year he enrolled in the CTEC (Career and Technical Education) program at Orange-Ulster BOCES in the Health Careers program, and he has grown into an outstanding student.”

Anthony, now a senior at Warwick Valley High School, established personal goals for this school year:

  • Keep all of his grades in the 90s
  • Do all of his work and hand it in in time
  • Get into the Orange-Ulster BOCES honor roll each quarter and the National Technical Honor Society

During Middle School, Anthony experienced some tough times. However, his life started to turn around between ninth and 10th grade. He met some new friends and found a bond with some of his teachers, like Christina O’Carroll and Ryan Candia. Ms. O’Carroll inspired a passion for school and math while Mr. Candia talked to him daily before or after class to support him. 

“Anthony is a very resilient young man. He has come a really long way and he worked really hard to get to the point where he’s at,” said High School Principal Georgianna Diopoulos. 

Anthony credits Dawn Barber in 10th grade for pushing him as a student. “She wouldn’t let me get away with anything,” he said with a laugh. He started getting better grades and making new friends. His geometry teacher, Alexander Ramjattan, believed in him and got him started with tutoring students in Algebra 2. 

He also started investing in himself with a physical fitness routine to lose weight and build muscle.

“It gave me even more determination, if I needed more, and a work ethic,” he said. “I felt like I could do more. I felt that mind-body connection and my mind was working clearer.”

In 10th and 11th grades, he felt that any holes he dug were shallower and easier to get out of. “If I dug myself a hole in one quarter, I could dig myself out the next,” he said. “If I lost my motivation, my passion for physical fitness would bring me back.”

He credits his father and brother for making sure he was staying on track.

Anthony’s ultimate goal is to someday become a psychiatric nurse practitioner. He realizes there are a lot of steps and school ahead of him to achieve that goal, but he said he is now ready for the journey. That journey begins with college next year to accomplish his first step of becoming a registered nurse. 

“It would have been a lot to think about before. If I knew this plan (years ago), I would have said, ‘I’m not doing this. This is too much.’ But, from where I am now, it’s like no matter what path I take, I’ll make it happen.”

Anthony Velazquez in high school courtyard with trees and school as backdrop


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