Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Between International Baccalaureate classes and volunteering at school events, Binghamton senior Elizana-Marie Joseph still finds time to make a difference in her community.
"I participate in the Binghamton High School Annual Thanksgiving Dinner and Cancer Survivors Dinner, partnered with Relay for Life. I also help do a lot of different events at Saints John and Andrew Church," Joseph said.
She holds a 103 average and still finds time to volunteer at school events and the Jewish Community Center in Vestal.
Joseph was the youngest youngest counselor the JCC has ever hired.
"Whenever we need help we call her, she comes, she volunteers. She's always smiling and she's always positive. She's so smart and an incredible role model," said JCC Executive Director Sheryl Brumer.
That's precisely why Joseph was one of the 28 recipients of the Student Community Service Awards from Sen. Tom Libous (R-52nd).
Joseph is using the $1,000 scholarship toward her education at the University of Rochester, where she hopes to combine medical and communication studies.
Elizana says her dream of becoming a medical news correspondent all started because of her community service.
"In order to be in the medical field, you need to have a drive to help others. And I think that my community service has helped me realize that that's what I really enjoy doing, helping people," Joseph said.
"Everyone should watch out for Elizana," Brumer said. "She's the one to watch, she's going to do great things."
While she's studying to do great things, Joseph plans to come back and continue helping the Binghamton area.
"It speaks volumes when you come back to the same community and try to better it and help it in the various ways that you can because you started here," Joseph said.
There are 27 other seniors from around the Southern Tier who also received the award.
To learn more about the all of the winners, visit Sen. Tom Libous' website.