RIDGWAY – The North Central Pennsylvania Regional Planning and Development Commission (North Central) is pleased to announce that Sara Zameroski, who will be a junior at Ridgway Area High School in the fall, will be attending the Appalachian Regional Commission’s (ARC) Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Academy at Oak Ridge, Tennessee.

Sara Zameroski, a junior at Ridgway Area High School, will attend the Appalachian Regional Commission’s prestigious summer camp from July 6-19.

Zameroski will spend July 6-19 at Oak Ridge Associated Universities, where she will work on guided group math, computer, and science technology research projects with other students from around the Appalachian Region. The Oak Ridge National Laboratory is one of the largest U.S. Department of Energy research facilities in the nation.

“It is really cool what they do there,” Zameroski said. “It is a good opportunity, and I am going to get to learn so much. I am just excited to see it and learn about it. They have a lot of state-of-the-art equipment, and I am excited to see that.”

Deb Delhunty, business development coordinator at North Central, was invited to the school to interview Zameroski as part of a mock interview exercise designed to give students real-world experience. Delhunty was so impressed by Zameroski that she recommended Zameroski inquire about the STEM Academy.

However, Zameroski won’t be the first student from Ridgway or the first in her family to attend the camp as she follows in the footsteps of her older sister, Anna Cristini.

“I knew of the program from (Anna) telling me about it,” Zameroski said. “(My family) already knew a little bit about it, but when Deb suggested it, I thought it was a pretty good idea for me to do it. It was pretty easy to talk to my parents – the thing my sister went and did would be good for me too. So, it was pretty easy from there.

“I really like STEM, so I want to go into STEM later in life. In college, I want to get into the sciences, something with STEM, hopefully a field where I can be working environmentally with sustainability and helping out with that. I really like the natural sciences. I like being able to look at the world around me and see how things work and being able to take things apart like ‘this happens because of this.’ I do Envirothon at school and I like the forests and this type of tree is there, so I know it is a healthy forest. I like being able to see those things.”

While Zameroski hasn’t completely worked out the details of what she wants to do in her career, she does know that she would prefer going to a smaller college following her high school graduation.

“I know I want to go into something where I can help people or the environment and conservation and sustainability efforts,” Zameroski said.