Batya Stein, a Bruriah senior from Highland Park, has been selected as one of the nation’s top high school scholars and named a National Merit Scholarship Finalist.
Coming just weeks after being accepted early action to Princeton, Batya’s extraordinary scholastic achievement has earned her the National Merit Scholarship Finalist honor, attained by less than half a percent of all high school students across the country.
“We are so proud of Batya,” said Principal Rabbi Joseph Oratz. “Batya represents the very best of Bruriah: academic strength, intellectual curiosity, refined midot and service to her friends and community. She is a superior student with an excellent work ethic and incredible character.”
Batya and her family were quick to focus attention on those who supported her success.
“The exceptionally high level of programming at Bruriah, especially in the sciences, opened new worlds for Batya,” said her mother, Mrs. Rachel Stein. “We are very proud of Batya and gratified that all of her hard work at Bruriah paid off.”
Batya praised Bruriah and cited its many opportunities to explore and excel as contributing to her high academic achievement. “Our teachers look for our strengths,” she said. “They match us up with opportunities to grow.
Batya cited a junior year STEM project as an example of how she was encouraged to create and innovate at Bruriah.
“Last year, our CIJE STEM team created a wearable device called ‘HearbyModulated,’ which helps the hard of hearing modulate their voices and gauge their own volume,” she explained. “We designed and programmed it, and hope that the next team will improve the system so that one day it may go to market and help people.”
For Batya, the STEM courses have been formative, piquing an interest in multiple disciplines and setting her on track to study engineering or medicine after high school. Before Princeton however, Batya plans to spend a year in Israel, studying at Nishmat in Jerusalem. “I look forward to being in Israel for a year and learning with young women from all over the world,” she said.
Effusive in her praise for others, Batya credits much of her success to her parents and teachers. “My parents are incredible,” she said. “They are caring, encouraging and supportive of my dreams.”
As for her teachers at Bruriah, Batya was full of admiration. “The faculty doesn’t just teach, they coach, guide and mentor us. They look for our unique characteristics and help us excel.” Echoing her daughter, Mrs. Stein added, “Dr. Erblich for biology and Mrs. Poupko for English not only provide exceptional academic rigor but also are personally approachable and accessible to the students. They are outstanding role-models for our girls and that makes all the difference.”