Coed, independent, PK3-12th grade school in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Meet Jake Andrews

Jake Andrews is a Shorecrest lifer—a term used to describe students who attended Shorecrest for at least 12 years. "My first memories of Shorecrest are walking into the Junior Kindergarten building and seeing that two-story loft," he remembers with a smile. Fourteen years later, four and five year olds at Shorecrest are still enjoying that same loft - turning it into everything from a rainforest canopy to a gingerbread house, depending on what the students are studying. Jake’s Junior Kindergarten teacher, Shannon Booth Lipan remembers Jake, “He was such a gem! He was such a serious, inquisitive kid—I always really enjoyed my conversations with him. He was also the only 4-year-old who ever INSISTED on me coming over for dinner at his house,” she laughs.

While the physical plan of the school has changed since Jake began in Ms. Booth’s class, many of the hallmarks of the Shorecrest experience have stayed the same—from Poetry in the Park to Fall Festival to Field Day to Homecoming Week class competitions. One of the hallmark Shorecrest experiences that Jake remembers well is his eighth grade passion project, a chance for eighth graders to pursue a challenging project that has significance for them.

“I had been playing piano for years, but I challenged myself to learn the theme of the video game Skyrim. I was too nervous to perform live at the Passion Project presentation, so I filmed myself playing it ahead of time,” Jake explains. “But unfortunately, when I went to play the video, the video file was corrupted, so I ended up having to play it live anyway!”
Jake also fondly recalls the many trips he has taken with his classmates through the years. “A lot of the class trips we took together were really fun,” he says, but one really stands out.

“When we went to SeaCamp in Middle School all the boys went to the bath house to shower off after swimming in the ocean, and spontaneously one of my friends started singing the National Anthem. By the end of the song we were all singing together really loudly and enthusiastically. Some of the non-Shorecrest people staying at the camp came outside to see what was happening, and here we were, a bunch of Middle School boys singing ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ together.”

That patriotic thread has carried on through the years for a few members of the Class of 2017. Recently, a group of students sought to find a way to honor those people in our community who serve—military members, police officers, and firefighters. Jake and his peers founded Operation: Red, White, and Blue. He explains, “Through Operation: Red, White, and Blue we work with Wounded Warrior project, we do projects with military vets, and we visit cemeteries and lay wreaths on the graves of veterans.” He adds, “It’s great to honor and serve those who serve us.”
Outside of the classroom, Jake has spent much the past seven years in the water. “All through high school I swam on the school swim team—it was pretty tough. I took the easy route, opting out of the morning practices, and I still swam for an hour and a half after school every day.” Modesty aside, Jake, the team Captain, led many of his team members to State competition this year. Although he is a talented swimmer, Jake wants to focus on his studies next year “…but I do plan on continuing to swim to stay in shape,” he adds.
So what is Jake studying at Northeastern next year? “I plan on studying some sort of engineering,” he says. “I don’t know exactly what type of engineering I want to pursue yet, but I feel like I will enjoy that field. I really enjoy studying math and science, and I consider myself pretty creative. I think to be a good engineer it’s helpful to be able to think outside the box.”

Jake is also excited to get involved in Northeastern’s Co-op program, an educational program in which students alternate semesters of academic study with semesters of full-time employment in positions related to their career interests in both the United States and globally. “I’d like to have the chance to work abroad—I’d love to work with one of Northeastern’s partner programs at the BMW headquarters in Berlin, Germany.”
And while Jake is ready to wrap-up his Senior year and start new adventures, he will miss Shorecrest—the place he has called home for fourteen years. "I’ll miss the comfort of this place,” he says. “Having been here for fourteen years, this place so familiar. You could blindfold me and put me anywhere on campus and I’d know exactly where I am!”
Whether or not they know it now, Jake and his peers will always have a home away from home at Shorecrest. Just as Jake remembers years of traditions and experiences as a young student at Shorecrest, Shorecrest graduates of the future will remember a tradition started by this year’s graduating class: the Senior Celebration Walk. While Baccalaureate and Commencement are traditionally events attended by Upper School faculty, and friends and families of the graduates, this year the whole school had a chance to celebrate the grads.
On the Friday before Commencement weekend, the Class of 2017—led by Sparky, the Shorecrest mascot, paraded around the school in T-shirts emblazoned with the names of the colleges and universities they will be attending in the fall. Every other student at Shorecrest — from three-year-olds in the Alpha classes all the way up to students in the Upper School — lined the sidewalks and hallways around campus. Students and faculty cheered and waved signs and banners, rang bells and blew whistles, gave high fives and hugs and chanted “Let’s go Seniors!” as Jake and his classmates proudly walked the campus one last time.
    • The Class of 2017 has a laugh at Commencement as one of Jake's JK memories is shared.

Shorecrest Preparatory School

5101 First Street Northeast
St Petersburg, FL 33703
Phone: (727) 522-2111  |  Fax: (727) 527-4191

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Shorecrest Preparatory School is a private, non-sectarian, coeducational, college preparatory day school for students preschool through high school, located in St. Petersburg, Florida.