As the centennial Class of 2023 prepares to bid farewell to Shorecrest Preparatory School, there is an individual who stands out as a true scholar. Valedictorian Dylan Winer ‘23 has left an indelible mark through his exceptional academic achievements, dedication to Shorecrest robotics, and kindness towards others.
Throughout his time at Shorecrest starting in the seventh grade, Dylan has consistently displayed a remarkable level of maturity and thoughtfulness that has earned him the admiration and respect of students and faculty. Upper School Math Teacher Mike Battle, Dylan’s advisor the past two years, aptly describes him as "incredibly kind and always willing to help out his classmates."
Upper School Math Teacher Jessica Thorn described Dylan's broad intellectual aptitude as “wise beyond his years, about everything.” His course curriculum, which includes 10 Advanced Placement classes (school policy limits students to a maximum of 10 AP classes) and fourteen honors courses, reflects the highest level of rigor in every core discipline. Dylan was approved to take AP Spanish Language and Culture but could not add this to his schedule because of our school's AP limit. Instead he took an independent study in Spanish V Honors while studying the AP curriculum individually in preparation for the AP Spanish Language and Culture exam. This level of motivation and intellectual curiosity has earned him recognition as a National Merit Finalist, an AP Scholar with Distinction, and membership in the Cum Laude Society.
With his deep interest in STEAM subjects, Dylan pursued Shorecrest's STEAM Signature Program, which is a pathway for Upper School students to pursue STEAM-related coursework and allows them to apply critical thinking and 21st Century skills while investigating a specialized area of interest. In addition to delving into courses within his area of study (Computer Science), Dylan completed a self-directed, culminating project to support the fourth grade environmental unit of study: Environmental Sustainability Application for the Lower School.
Dylan describes his STEAM project: “For my personal project I created an iPad application that educates fourth grade students on topics including global warming, renewable energy, plastic pollution, and sustainable farming in accordance with their environmental sustainability unit. This application combines article-like pages that simplify these concepts, along with interactive elements, such as categorizing activities and self-reflection. I chose this topic because I have always been passionate about environmental stewardship and promoting awareness regarding the importance of integrating sustainability into society.”
Dylan has demonstrated this passion through his participation in Keep Pinellas Beautiful as a member of the Youth Advisory Board. For four years he has contributed to their environmental conservation initiatives in the community and at school.
Dylan's desire to expand his knowledge in engineering and social sciences has led him to pursue opportunities outside of traditional coursework. As Vice President and later President of the VEX Robotics Team, Dylan's leadership and organizational skills were instrumental in winning the Design Award in their first year of competition. His team's outstanding performance at the 2022 CREATE Robotics Open World Championship is also a testament to his leadership and organizational skills. Robotics Coach Melissa Estremera credits Dylan's guidance as a key factor in the team's success.
National History Day competitions have also allowed Dylan to combine his interests in STEAM and humanities beyond the confines of the classroom. His team project website, "Cracking the Enigma: Crucial Communication in WWII," earned 2nd place in the state of Florida in 2021 and 1st place in Florida in 2022. Dylan's ability to integrate his technological skills with his fascination for historical events showcases his interdisciplinary approach to learning.
In addition to acknowledging Dylan's intellect and work ethic, classmates and teachers have praised him for his kindness, willingness to help others, and dry sense of humor that pops up unexpectedly - which adds a unique charm to his personality. As described by Upper School Spanish Teacher, Al Irwin, “In the person of Dylan, you will also find a young man who is unwaveringly empathetic and compassionate, coachable, appropriately humorous, and always utmost appreciative and respectful toward his teachers and other school staff.”
We celebrate Dylan Winer, the Valedictorian of the Class of 2023; his exceptional achievements, his relentless pursuit of knowledge, and his compassion towards others. Congratulations, Dylan, on your well-deserved success, and may your future endeavors be as bright as your time at Shorecrest Preparatory School.