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Irvington High Valedictorian Is Jill Of All Trades

Irvington High School Valedictorian Clara Foung doesn’t fit into any one particular mold.

Foung said her interests were “kind of all over the place.” She credits that to her great experiences in the Irvington school system, where she said the programs are strong.

“I think that’s one of the reasons why I’m so interested in a lot of different things,” she said.

Foung will be speaking at Saturday’s graduation ceremony, which takes place at 5 p.m. at Matthiessen Park in Irvington.

Foung said she didn’t expect to be valedictorian.

“I was actually very surprised to be valedictorian at all, because there’s a group of 10, maybe 20 of us who are all very close in grade range,” she said.

Foung’s friend Lindsay Shapiro was named salutatorian. Foung said there wasn’t any animosity between the two about the rankings. She said the grade point averages of the top students were thousandths of a point apart.

“I think that everyone, especially in that whole group, could have been valedictorian or salutatorian,” she said. “Hopefully that means that no one was sad.”

During her time at IHS, Foung ran cross country and track. She joined the band and wind ensemble, as well as the chorus and Latin Club. She also joined the Buddhist Meditation Club after a friend started it.

Lately, Foung said, she’s been into fashion and sewing. This year she interned with the design team at Eileen Fisher. She even made her own prom dress, which took her a bit longer than expected.

“For the past couple of years, I’ve just been into sewing and I was talking to a friend whose mom had made her own prom dress,” she said. “We just were so excited to make our own dresses that we just said ‘Why not?’”

Foung said she is still trying to figure out what to do after graduation, although she had a potential career goal.

“I’ve really become interested in medicine and I’ve been thinking about going into medicine as a career,” she said. “So as of now, my kind of potential major would be something in the sciences or hopefully just going into pre-med.”

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