SJP alum adventuring through gap year

Yegor Smith-Realmuto '21 has had experiences of a lifetime since graduating from SJP. 

We recently caught up with Yegor and what he has been up to since graduating from SJP!

Yegor started his gap year by embarking on a 72-day Outward Bound Leadership Semester. This was broken into 3 parts, canoeing, backpacking, and sailing. The trip started in Maine where he canoed along the St. Croix River which forms part of the Canada–United States border. After a few weeks of canoeing, he took a 1-week advanced wilderness first-aid course. 

The next part of the course was focused on hiking. Yegor geared up and hiked for 3 weeks around Maine and into the White Mountains of New Hampshire, he carried all of our supplies and food while hiking 8-12 miles a day. By the time Yegor was finishing with the hiking portion of the course, the weather was getting cold so he was ready for the Florida Keys! While in the Florida Keys, Yegor with 10 other students and 2 instructors lived on a 30-foot open sailboat. This part of the course was Yegor's favorite due to his interest in the ocean and marine biology. For 26 day, Yegor sailed over 200 miles around the Keys. While living on the water, he went from island to island or just stayed on the water, exploring, snorkeling, and bird watching. 

For the remaining part of Yegor's gap year, he wanted to do something with animals. Yegor was accepted to an internship at Woodstock Farm Sanctuary in New York. This is a non-profit animal sanctuary that takes farm animals from neglect and abuse cases. The internship included feeding and supplying water to over 400 animals. To end his gap year, Yegor was in Alaska this summer to work for Leader Creek Fisheries. This is one of the markets leading salmon producers in Alaska. He will be working as a seafood processor which includes cleaning and cutting the fish, or packaging and freezing the fish. 

The SJP community is jealous of all your adventure, Yegor. We are sending you the best as you embark on your newest adventure at The University of Rhode Island this upcoming fall!

Before he takes off (again) from Boston, Yegor shared a few of his favorite experiences while attending SJP. 

Yegor's favorite class at SJP was environmental science senior year, taught by Ms.Gipson. "I really enjoyed this course because we studied and learned about a wide variety of topics, including illegal fishing, global warming, and the use of pesticides in the farming industry. We also did a lot of hands-on projects which is my preferred way of learning. Overall it was just a really fun course that I enjoyed and learned a lot. It helped me get my foot in the door in the environmental science field which is similar to my major in college (Aquaculture and Fisheries)."

Yegor's favorite events at SJP were pep rallies. "What I loved was the day of the pep rally the energy at school was great, and everyone was happy and excited. We would get out early and head to the gym, every grade would show their spirit by repping their color with clothing, face paint, and bandannas. The student council did a great job of organizing exciting activities that were just as fun to watch if you were not participating in them. Some of my favorites were dodge ball, knockout, and the athletic team's relay races."

If he had to give his high school self advice: "The first is if you are struggling ask for help whether that is in classes, on a sports team, or even outside of school. Leaving SJP made me realize how much support and care the students and staff at SJP give. It is very special and is not found everywhere so take advantage of it while it's available. Secondly, I would say use your time wisely. By this I mean a few things, first when you get assignments plan out what and when you are going to do it. This would have made me less stressed and made me produce better work in some instances. This also means 4 years sounds like a lot of time but high school does fly by so make good connections and get out of your comfort zone, you don't want to look back and say I wish I could have done that."