5.5.20 ‒5.31.20 ‒ vol. 16

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Iona Preparatory Valedictorian, Salutatorian Announced

Iona Preparatory School Seniors Michael Bachmann and Nicholas Cannistraci have earned recognition as the Class of 2020 valedictorian and salutatorian, respectively.  Brother Thomas R. Leto, Ed.D., President of Iona Prep, marked the announcement today with a special visit to each of the student’s homes to congratulate them in person and thank them for their hard work and dedication. Iona Preparatory School Class of 2020 has 198 graduates. So far students have received over $23M in academic scholarships.


Leto said it was a pleasure to see Bachmann and Cannistraci excel in their academic work and extracurricular activities, even during the pandemic.  “At Iona Prep, our students are taught to lead, advocate and pursue excellence in all endeavors.  We are extremely proud of Michael and Nicholas for their contributions throughout their entire four years as Gaels.  They truly embody the Iona Prep Man and we look forward to seeing them succeed in their future endeavors.”


Bachmann (GPA 100.7125) resides in Redding, Conn., and was recognized as an Advanced Placement (AP) Scholar with Distinction. He served as Editor-in-Chief of the school yearbook; President of the Iona Prep Players group where he performed in more than nine shows; and a Speech & Debate (Forensics) Captain, qualifying for State Finals during his Sophomore and Junior Years.  He also co-founded Gaels-for-Life, an organization that is dedicated to fostering love and respect for life in all stages around campus.  Come the fall, he will be continuing his education journey at Hillsdale College in Michigan.


Cannistraci (GPA 100.7071) resides in New Rochelle and has received many accolades and honors during his four years, including being a member of the Mandarin Honor Society, Latin Honor Society, National Honor Society and an AP Scholar with Distinction.  He facilitated class retreats for grades 7-10 and showcased Iona Prep to the surrounding communities. He was one of eight students selected to the Translational Molecular Imaging Institute at Mount Sinai for a 6-week summer program for graduate, college and high school students at the Icahn School of Medicine with a focus on neurological and psychiatric disorders and computer programming skills.  In addition to setting the academic bar high for his peers, Cannistraci also cleared many as the pole vault team captain and Westchester County All-Star Honorable Mention the past two years.  He was accepted early decision to the University of Pennsylvania.


Since March 16, Iona Prep has been conducting classes via remote learning.  The seniors last day of classes were May 14, 2020, follow by a “drive-through” recognition ceremony the very next day during which the future graduates received personalized lawn signs, T-shirts and blessed scapular medals, along with their commencement gowns and honor stoles.


Valedictorian Bachmann and Salutatorian Cannistraci will address the senior Class of 2020, either virtually or in person, during a graduation ceremony tentatively scheduled for Saturday, June 27. Specific details will be announced closer to the date once County and State officials have released guidelines for responsible social gatherings.


Reaccredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges & Schools in 2015, Iona Preparatory School K-12 sits on 37 acres of suburban green in New Rochelle, N.Y., where it educates young men to be moral and ethical leaders.  Iona Preparatory School is a Catholic community inspired by the charism of Blessed Edmund Rice as expressed in the Essential Elements of a Christian Brothers Education. We develop young men into moral and ethical leaders who are dedicated to Christian service and who strive for spiritual, intellectual and physical excellence. Iona Prep was recently named as Westchester’s only all-boys Catholic school to make the “NY top 100 private schools list” on niche.com. The Centennial Campaign for Excellence is a $10 million capital campaign that will greatly enhance the arts and technology programs for all students. Brick-and-mortar components include the addition of a 435-seat auditorium and an expansion of the Upper School’s Paul Verni Fine Arts Center. At the Lower School, the newly renovated Devlin Library & Center for Excellence has been completely updated and renovated with a focus on Project Based Learning.


For more information, please visit www.IonaPrep.org and, to hear our story, visit www.IAmIonaPrep.com.