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The Mount Vernon High School Valedictorian Gabrielle Sylvester Receives Full Academic Scholarship to New York University

The Mount Vernon High School Valedictorian Gabrielle Sylvester

The Mount Vernon High School Valedictorian Gabrielle Sylvester Receives Full Academic Scholarship to New York University

MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. (May 13, 2021) — The Mount Vernon High School valedictorian Gabrielle Sylvester was recently awarded a full academic scholarship to New York University (NYU).

“Gabrielle is an exceptionally gifted student, and her acceptance to New York University is well deserved. We have had the privilege of watching her develop and flourish as an academic, an athlete, and a musician, and we will be watching in excitement as she continues her great achievements as a graduate of our schools,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Kenneth R. Hamilton.

Sylvester will graduate with a 98.59 GPA. She is a member of the National Honor Society, an AP Scholar, a recipient of The Mount Vernon High School Undergraduate Award for Excellence, a Questbridge College Prep Scholar, and a Questbridge National College Match finalist.

She is also a member of The Mount Vernon High School varsity tennis team, which was a Co-League champion in 2020.

In addition to NYU, Sylvester had been accepted to Rutgers University, Pennsylvania State University, St. John’s University, Stony Brook University, Binghamton University, and Fordham University.

As a student at NYU, Sylvester plans to major in Psychology and minor in Africana Studies. She chose to attend the school due to its location, offering a wide range of internship and post-graduate job opportunities, as well as its diversity.

“The diverse student population is one of the major influences in my decision to attend NYU. A large percentage of the students are international, and I am eager to converse with them and increase my exposure to other cultures and differences of opinions,” said Sylvester.

“My desire to study Psychology is a direct result of my own experiences as a person of color in America. I believe that mental health in the Black community is often overlooked, and I want to work to dismantle the implicit biases and issues that many members of the community are afflicted with,” she added.

In addition to her academic pursuits, Sylvester is a trained violinist, having served as first chair of the Denzel Washington School of the Arts orchestra, a participant in the New York Area All State Orchestra, and first violinist of the Westchester Junior Strings Orchestra, an opportunity that allowed her to perform at Lincoln Center. She first began playing the violin at age 8 and explored her passion for the arts more intensely at the age of 13. Sylvester regularly performs at retired living facilities and churches.

While she does not intend on playing the violin professionally, Sylvester hopes to use her training to engage the Black community in classical music, a genre she says is typically not explored.

Sylvester is also a member of Her Honor Mentoring, a program founded by Nicole Scheindlin, daughter of Judge Judy Scheindlin, to provide unique learning opportunities and resources for young women. As part of the program, young women are paired with mentors in the community as a way to bridge the education and employment gaps and connect the needs of the public education system with powerful resources in the business community. Sylvester recognizes the immense support that her mentors, Dorian Tomace and Catherine Murchie at Mastercard, provided her during her college search and admission processes.