Michelle H. Daino
Kirsten Meskill-Tanas (United States Naval Academy, Office of Admissions, Blue and Gold Officer), presented Renee Vozza ‘23 with her Certificate of Appointment to the United States Naval Academy (USNA) on the morning of Tuesday, February 7. Renee was celebrated in the Parlor of the Mount building while surrounded by her parents, school administration, faculty, and friends.
“As a graduate of a Catholic all-girls high school, and a former officer in the U.S. military, I have a unique appreciation of the values promoted by academic institutions like the Mount. Renee exemplifies the integrity, resilience, selflessness, and strength to lead,” said Mrs. Meskill-Tanas. “I am proud she has chosen to lend her skills to the United States Navy. Renee is an amazing role model, and I can’t wait to hear of her successes at the Academy and as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Navy!”
Renee said, “Active service, leadership, and commitment are the foundations of my academic, community, and extracurricular life. I can think of no better place to lead and serve than the Naval Academy. “Combining this opportunity with my desire to pursue a STEM-focused degree and wanting a career in the Navy, USNA is the best place to achieve both.”
“The Naval Academy offers a unique STEM-focused curriculum where I can pursue a Bachelor of Science,” she added. “This academic degree, combined with the physical and mental preparation supports my long-term goal of being an engineer, having a Naval career, and also a mentor for girls who want to follow this path.”
Renee, who intends to pursue a degree in engineering, said, “Currently I would like to explore all the opportunities of careers in the Navy, but one that I am interested in right now would be a Surface Warfare Officer because they are the epitome of ‘leading by example.’ I will have a group of sailors that I am guiding and will have extensive knowledge in many areas from engineering to navigation.”
“As the military remains predominantly male, I can bring a new perspective to the Naval Academy as a female leader,” noted Renee. “Through my leadership roles at the Mount as President of my school or captain of athletic teams, I have developed strong communication and listening skills. I also have strong, beliefs and am willing to take on challenges. In addition to bringing a new perspective as a female leader, I also bring a gentler approach as someone who is kind and compassionate. An effective officer needs to be able to show empathy and care for the people they are leading. I have developed these skills through the Mercy Core Values of the Sisters of Mercy.”
“I was committed to going to the Mount the same way I am committed now to attending USNA. The Mount provided all the opportunities to strengthen skills necessary for success, like hard work, self-discipline, and good study habits,” she said. “The sense of community and support the Mount has given me is exemplary and I know this will be with me always.”
Sister Lisa D. Gambacorto, RSM, Ed.S., Directress of Mount Saint Mary Academy, said, “Renee has always demonstrated a strong and enthusiastic presence at the Mount which exemplifies leadership and compassion. She has defined so many of the Sisters of Mercy’s Core Values. I am confident that she will share that same spirit during her career with the United States Naval Academy. We wish her Godspeed!”
Elizabeth A. Roper, Director of College Counseling, stated, “Renee is the type of young woman that when she sets a goal, she works hard to achieve it. She does so with independence, determination, and ability that is admirable; she does so with humility and knowing that she has family, friends, teachers, coaches, and mentors to support her and offer their insight. Renee is an effective leader among the student body and on her teams, while also being a valued and respected teammate. Her sense of duty, her commitment to protect and serve, her ability to lead, and her motivating energy among her peers will allow her to be an asset to the USNA, as she has been and will continue to be in the Mount community.”
“I am fortunate to teach Renee in AP Spanish Language and Culture, and previously taught her in Spanish 4 Honors and Spanish 3 Honors courses,” said Madeline Albrittain, Spanish teacher, and World Languages Chair. “Renee asks thoughtful questions and is motivated to understand the concept fully. She is always engaged in class, participates fully in class discussions and collaborative tasks. She works well in group settings and collaborates well, ensuring that each member is included. Her commitment to education, enthusiastic leadership skills and willingness to learn will be a positive addition to the Naval Academy.”
Steven Muratore, math and computer science teacher and Computer Science Chair, remarked, “I had the pleasure of teaching Renee in Pre-Calculus Honors and AP Calculus AB. She is determined and focused, consistently mastering the material presented to her. She is hardworking and willing to invest the time and effort necessary to excel in math. Renee is an extremely intelligent and driven student. As a member of the Executive Board of our Student Council, she fosters clear communication among the members of our community, plans and facilitates exciting events, and models maturity and integrity for her peers. She also collaborates effectively and enthusiastically as a member of a leadership team. Renee possesses the intellect, work ethic, and character to succeed in her future endeavors and help others do the same.”
At Mount Saint Mary Academy, Renee is President of the Student Council Executive Board, Co-President of Spanish Club, a member of the Peer Ministry Leadership team, and the varsity lacrosse and soccer teams. She also volunteers during the year at the Jardine Academy (a school for children of multiple disabilities).