Superintendent’s Spotlight: Ella Sussner


Superintendent’s Spotlight: Ella Sussner

October 11, 2022

This week, we feature our first two-time Superintendent’s Spotlight honoree! Warwick Valley High School student Ella Sussner was first in the Spotlight in 2018 as a seventh grader preparing for her final year of middle school. Today, she is a senior preparing for college.

Ella and Principal Diopoulos (2018)

In her previous Spotlight, Ella was job-shadowing WVMS Principal Diopolous because she was interested in learning about what goes into being a leader. “I aspire to be a leader,” she said then, and shared that she’d like to one day find a job related to her two favorite subjects, math and science.

This year, WVHS Principal Marguerite Fusco nominated Ella for the innate leadership qualities she exhibits around the high school, along with her outstanding academic achievements and the passion with which she pursues the things she loves.

“Ella is just one of those students who you know you can count on to be thoughtful and offer help when someone needs it,” said Principal Fusco. “She is committed to her academics and getting the most of her education. This year she helped us as a student ambassador during New Student Orientation, where her communication and leadership skills were on full display.”

Ella fondly recalls the seniors who helped her on her first days of high school and how much it helped her feel welcome and at ease.

“My whole learning of the ecosystem of the school was really shaped by the people running my orientation,” she said. “I wanted to share those same kinds of things, to pass on lessons the seniors told me as a freshman. When you learn the secrets, spread them, make somebody’s life easier.”

Ella achieved Summa Cum Laude Honor Roll status in all four marking periods last year and is carrying a full schedule of AP courses this year. The National Honor Society member is taking AP Government, AP Language & Composition, and, her favorites, AP Calculus, AP Biology, and AP Psychology.

Ella has always loved the critical thinking and analysis involved in math and science, and recently developed a passion for medicine, specifically orthopedic surgery. While being treated for a knee injury herself, Ella met the woman who has become her mentor, Dr. Beth Shubin Stein, Associate Attending Orthopedic Surgeon and Co-Director of the Women’s Sports Medicine Center at HSS. Dr. Shubin Stein has taken Ella under her wing, even inviting her for job shadowing.

“That’s really developed my love for orthopedics,” said Ella. “The combination of sports medicine and orthopedic surgery, and having my two loves – medicine and football – intertwine; for that to possibly be my career? That’s something that excites me very much!”

In her spare time Ella is an avid Fantasy Football player and diehard New York Giants fan. In fact, she admits to adding Giants games to her calendar so she doesn’t find herself stuck working on those days. It’s been a good season so far. The Giants are 3-1 and so is her fantasy team.

“I’m currently leading my league in points, so hopefully I come through with the prize,” she said. “The Giants, that’s most definitely a family thing. My mom likes to say that my dad is a football fan, but he turned me into a monster. Oh, I’m nuts! Much more of a fan than he is now. Go, Big Blue!”

Ella is working hard toward the STEM-y dream job she envisioned in middle school. She’s set clear goals. She is sending out undergrad college applications to major in Biomedical Engineering, and plans to ultimately head off to medical school.

As for the rest of her senior year?

“Hopefully the Giants make the playoffs,” she laughed. “But, all the fun senior things! The senior trip, of course graduation. The light at the end of the tunnel is definitely bright.”


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