Hicksville Teen Named Youth Of The Year
As part of their ongoing commitment to providing local youths with the opportunity to grow in a “positive, motivating environment,” according to their website, the Hicksville chapter of Boys and Girls Clubs of America recently chose the recipient of their annual Youth of the Year award.
The Hicksville News spoke with Andrew Scarpaci, a Hicksville resident and Hicksville High School senior, who was the chosen youth for this year’s award.
In his six-year history of being involved with the Hicksville Boys and Girls Club, Scarpaci transformed from being someone who just participates in club affairs to being someone who volunteers his time to make the club a success. He even worked a 14-hour shift at the recent Belmont Stakes to help raise money for the club.
“I am also in very good academic standing and know how to balance my time between schoolwork, other school activities—including three varsity sports and various clubs—and still find all the time I can to continue going to the Boys and Girls Club, a place that helped me grow in many ways growing up,” said Scarpaci of why he believes he was nominated for the Youth of the Year award.
Upon learning he won for his club chapter, Scarpaci traveled upstate to Troy with Nick Singh, the Hicksville chapter’s youth program director, to receive his official award from Boys and Girls Clubs of America.
“I was honored to go upstate to Troy and represent the Hicksville Boys and Girls Club, among many talented candidates from other Boys and Girls Clubs all over New York State,” he mused. “I was extremely excited [to win]. I have wanted this since I first learned about the event in seventh grade, and year by year hearing everyone’s stories—just hoping my day would eventually come when I could be a Youth of the Year also.”
During his time upstate to receive the award, Scarpaci learned that not only did he win Youth of the Year for his local chapter, but he was also a New York State finalist for the Youth of the Year award.
“That was a great feeling knowing I not only was a Youth of the Year candidate, but also a New York State finalist,” he said. “That moment when they announced the finalists will be something I will cherish forever.”
“He’s a kid that definitely looks at negatives and turns them into positives,” Singh commented to the News about Scarpaci. “He has a never-give-up attitude. I’m honored to be a part of his growing up process.”
When Scarpaci joined the Hicksville Boys and Girls Club six years ago, he noted that he was not someone who was very social, but upon meeting new faces in the club’s welcoming environment, he became a whole new version of himself.
“Growing up, the Boys and Girls Club was something I needed. I did not grow socially as a person until I started to make new friends and talk to more people when I first started going to the Boys and Girls Club,” Scarpaci said. “Afterwards, I gained the confidence to join school sports and clubs, and become a leader in many of those activities over the years.”
With dreams of being a sports statistical analyst and working in sports radio and writing, Scarpaci will be continuing his education at LIU Post in the honors college as a sports management and marketing major, with a minor in journalism.
To learn more about the Hicksville Boys and Girls Club, visit www.hycbgc.com.