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EHS October 2020 Senior Spotlight: Meet Charlie DeBlasio

Charlie DeBlasio The Coronavirus pandemic put a ‘twist’ in the academic high school learning experience at the end of last year, and the start of this school year, your senior year.  This year certainly was a different start than any other year, do you have any ‘words of wisdom’ to share with your classmates?

I would say the most important thing that helped me get through the end of last year was trying to find some organization and normalcy in my routine.  The best thing you can do in a time of uncertainty is to try and stick to old habits from a time that was normal.  Just put your head down and keep moving forward.

Ewing High School has decided to participate in Fall Athletics.  The first practice was Monday, September 14th the day of this interview.  How excited are you to step on the soccer field with your teammates? 

I couldn't be more excited about our season.  We have all been working hard individually during quarantine to stay in shape, and with practices starting, I am excited to see all the guys back together.  I think just being together again as a team will be a big morale boost during these hard times.

What are your expectations for the soccer season?

Out of all of my years playing soccer for Ewing, I am looking forward to this season the most.  Not only am I excited just to have a season with everything going on, but we have a really strong group of guys who have been playing soccer with each other for a few years now.  I feel like we have a very strong team chemistry, and we are expecting to add a few wins to our name this season.

Who is the team to beat?

I would say that Hopewell is going to be the team to beat this year, at least for Ewing.  We know a lot of players on that team, and we’ve all been waiting for a rematch from last year's close game.  We have some other teams that we’d like to beat as well, but I think Hopewell offers us one of the greatest challenges this year.

What do you think your last thoughts will be when the final whistle blows of your last high school soccer game, a season that almost did not happen?

It’s crazy that my last high school season is here already, but I don’t think I will feel that much.  I’ve played on the field so as to not leave anything behind, and when the final whistle blows, I understand that I will have to continue moving forward.  There are obviously some moments I wish I could go back to, and some goals that I wish I could’ve scored, but overall, I will just be happy that I was able to play one last season with my team, and I will enjoy that time while it lasts. 

How do you think students can stay involved in the school community?

I would say joining clubs, sports, and any other activities such as student government is the best way to stay involved.  In simple terms, the best way to get involved is to just put yourself out there.  Start talking to teachers about different activities you may be able to partake in, and make your name known.   

In which activities do you participate in school? 

I have been a member of the EHS Boys Soccer team since freshman year.  I also have helped out with certain events like Back to School Night through Key Club since sophomore year, and I became a member of the Stage Crew during my junior year.  I was also lucky enough to be inducted into the National Honor Society at the end of my junior year. 

What activities do you participate in outside of school? 

Outside of school, I play club soccer whenever the high school season ends.  This typically runs from winter all the way through the end of summer.  This takes up most of my time, but I also held a part time job for just under two years before the COVID-19 outbreak.  I also do fundraising for foundations such as the American Lung Association and Cystic Fibrosis Foundation through stair climbing.    

What awards or acknowledgements have you received in school and/or outside of school? 

In school, I have been on honor roll and principal’s honor roll since entering high school.  I was student of the month in September of 2019, and I was inducted into National Honor Society at the end of last year.  In the spring of 2020, I was nominated to participate in the 73rd Annual Delaware Valley Science Council Awards Program, and I was selected to be the Ewing Township American Legion Post 314 representative at the 2020 American Legion New Jersey Boys’ State.  I was also selected to represent New Jersey at the 2019 Youth Education Summit in Washington D.C. 

What accomplishments are you most proud of?  

I would have to say I am most proud of representing New Jersey at the 2019 Youth Education Summit.  I was one of only 60 juniors and seniors in the country selected for this program, and the only person selected from New Jersey.  The week-long stay I had in Washington D.C. was also one of the best weeks of my life, making many memories and friends who I still stay in touch with.  While it was fun, it was also an excellent learning experience, and I am very proud of being selected. 

What is your favorite memory of high school to date?  

With everything going on related to COVID-19, some of my favorite memories have to be the night games for soccer these past years.  I wouldn’t think much of them until now, when we have no night games because of the pandemic.  If I have to be specific, it has to be beating Princeton freshman year at home under the lights in a very close game.  This has to be my favorite memory because of the feeling on the field when the clock reached zero and I was able to celebrate with the team. 

Who is your favorite teacher or coach?  Why?  Charlie

I would say my favorite teacher has to be Mr. Halpern.  I was definitely nervous taking honors physics because I heard it was a very tough class.  Mr.  Halpern taught in a way that made the class interesting and less difficult than it was said to be.  He provided one of the best learning experiences I’ve had in this school, and while I have never had a bad experience with a teacher at Ewing, Mr. Halpern was my most memorable.   

I can’t say whether I like one soccer coach over another because they have all made my experience at Ewing better.  Mr. Wazaleski provided me with a fantastic experience as a freshman, which helped ease my nerves about going into high school.  I was able to connect with a team of juniors and seniors because of his instruction.  Mr. Angebranndt took over the team my junior year, and while it was difficult transitioning coaches from one year to the next, he made it easier with his expectations and work ethic.  While not a teacher at EHS, Mr. Soto also provided a major contribution to the discipline and work ethic that I have today through his assistance and instruction with the team every single year.  Coaches come and go, but every single member of the coaching staff of the soccer team who had me under their instruction made my high school experience that much better. 

Any words advice for students entering their freshman year at EHS? 

My biggest advice is to get involved with extra-curricular activities and to build your connections with teachers.  My high school experience was defined by the friends I made by joining the soccer team and other clubs.  Every teacher at Ewing is willing to help you if you are willing to work with them, and building those connections is crucial.  You never know when you may need them in the future. 

What are your plans after you graduate from Ewing High School? 

I am currently going through the process of applying to the United States Naval Academy, and I aim to join the service once I graduate from Ewing High School.  I am looking to major in aeronautical engineering or mechanical engineering, and I am excited for the opportunities the military will open up for me. 

Now the important question, during this time of social distancing, what have you been doing in your free time?  

During quarantine I have been playing video games, but most importantly I have been working out.  We had no guarantee of a soccer season, but I wanted to prepare for the season anyway.  I also was preparing for some fitness tests required for certain applications regarding the military.  Staying in shape was my main way of staying sane during these uncertain times.