One purpose of SI Voice is to sing the praises of SI’s unsung heroes: our students, faculty and staff who go above and beyond and who are exemplars of our values. We presented to you senior Jacqueline Monetta’s story in first post; this time, we have the story of Jack Bernabei ’15, who, as you will see, merits praise for his combination of generosity and intellectual pursuits. – John Knight
Jack Bernabei ’15 readily admits his addiction to service. He has travelled to Mexico with his church group for the past five years to do construction at a day care and orphanage just south of Tijuana, and he is now collecting money to buy uniforms for children there who can’t attend school without them.
A Larkspur resident, he raises funds by appealing to local church groups and by working part time in order to donate his funds, and he tutors students who live in a low-income community near his home.
On top of all of this, he is preparing himself for a medical career by shadowing neonatal surgeons, neurologists and dentists and by watching brain surgeries at UCSF. He just landed a two-week internship this summer at UCSF to assist a neurosurgeon.
“When I came to SI, I heard the phrase ‘Ignite the fire within.’ That has always resonated with me, and I now strive to live by these words. After I heard what my fellow students were doing, I tried to reach out and give more to my community.”
In his spare time, he hopes to study the Java programming language to add to the computer languages he learned last summer at a two-week programming camp.
“I’ve always been into math and science in middle school,” said Bernabei. “But I didn’t get into service until I came to SI. That’s when I saw the students with the blue Service Club blazers and asked how I could be involved.”
Next year, he plans to continue pursuing his other passion: competing in water polo. He has swam for SI for three years, and last fall, he helped the varsity to its best season in school history, earning the team a spot in sectional play. He also swims for his club water polo team, the Sleepy Hollow Acquatics, and he has earned a spot at the Junior Olympics three times thus far.