Director — Katrin Rudge
Katrin Rudge is the founder and Director of the Aquascience Program at Riverview, as well as Co-Director of the Stars to Starfish Program, at Riverview High School in Sarasota, FL. She is excited to be teaching Honors Marine Science I and II, as well as Dual Enrollment Marine Biology. Katrin and her ‘Team’ have spent the past 7 years designing, getting grants and creating this program. She calls it “priceless” when you witness the interaction of her interns and the visiting elementary and middle school students on show days.
Andres Abreu, also know as A.J, was born in Longbranch, New Jersey. After moving to Ohio and then Michigan he found his way to sunny Sarasota Florida. His interest of marine life stemmed from his childhood curiosity of whales, his favorite being the Humpback. Taking Marine Science 1 honors his sophomore year sparked his interest in further expanding his Marine life knowledge. And because his desired career choice as a History professor, he believed engaging in the Stars to Starfish program would be conducive to his future career goals. He is also the starring center for the Riverview Rams varsity football team.
Julia Abreu is a senior at Riverview High school. She likes to go to the beach and be in the water. Some of her favorite things to do is play basketball and swim. She plays basketball for our school as a shooting guard. She was born and raised in Florida and loves to learn about the marine life here in Florida.
Myah Brantingham was born in Sarasota Florida. She’s a 17 year old senior at Riverview High School. Ever since she was little she has had a love for the ocean and all the inhabitants. For the past three summers Myah has run a summer camp at her Martial Arts school in Lakewood Ranch, so she loves to work with kids and teach them new things. She enjoys how her always changing hair color grabs the kids attention, and they seem to love it too. Myah’s favorite sea creature is the cuttlefish.
Bridget Clancy is originally from Cincinnati, Ohio and is currently an eleventh grader at Riverview High School. She is the President of Marine Club and likewise, she plans on attending college to study marine biology in hopes to pursue a career in the Marine field. Her love for marine animals and frequent visits to Florida beaches growing up influenced her love for marine biology. Bridget is also a member of National English Honors Society. In addition, she spends her summers volunteering at Oak Park and aiding people with special needs. Overall, Bridget loves to spend time with her friends and family and enjoys her time on the water.
Anna Clark is a senior at Riverview High School. She was born in Raleigh, North Carolina, but raised mostly in Casselberry, Florida. During her school years, she moved to Mount Dora, Longwood, and eventually Sarasota, Florida, at the start of her junior year. Anna takes special, creative inspiration from the ocean and everything in it. She has been a member of choir every year except her senior year, plays piano, clarinet and cello. She loves to read, write draw and paint, play video games, and sleep. Things she deeply cherishes are her dogs and cats, her mother and her friends. She is a Stars to Starfish intern, as well as a mentor to students in other classes. For her senior year, she will give her all to achieve high grades, hopefully find a job and spend that time deciding on college locations and majors. Her life goals are to become a renowned author, composer, professional artist, and perhaps an equine caretaker.
Gabe Castellana is a senior at Riverview High School. He and a group of his friends grew the garden outside the AquaDome. He spends four hours every week volunteering at Sarasota Memorial Hospital. He is also a cashier/bagger at Publix. If he isn’t working at Publix or volunteering, he is hanging out with his friends at the gym. Gabe wants to go to Eckerd College for their marine biology program and their EC-SAR team who go out to sea to save shipwrecked civilians and other people in trouble at sea.
Hi! My name is Kiana Dodson and I am a senior at Riverview High School in Sarasota, Fl. When I’m not dancing at the Sarasota Russian Ballet School, you can find me at the beach hanging out with friends and enjoying nature. In my free time, I volunteer at Mote Marine Laboratory which is an amazing experience. It was shocking to see how quickly I gathered information and was able to share it with others. The Stars to Starfish Internship is just another opportunity for me to spread my knowledge about marine life to kids all over the county but I will also be learning new things as well! I believe we need to teach kids that no matter how small a marine organism is, they play an important role in the ecosystem. Who knows? Maybe I’ll inspire one who can change the world!
Greetings fellow Earthlings! I’m Erin! I’m a happy artsy hippie from Sarasota, and I’m a senior at Riverview. I have set out to achieve my dreams of traveling the world to explore the beautiful places and creatures it has to offer. Most of my time is dedicated to making art, playing music, cooking or learning more about the world around me. All my life, I have carried such curiosity for the ocean and the wonders that live beyond the shore. I hope to spend my life exploring as much as I can and getting to know my planet and the ocean. I am looking forward to a wonderful future with the Stars to Starfish program, and I am excited to share my knowledge of the planet with others. Can’t wait to see what the world has in store for me! Sending peace and love to all! Namaste
Sammi Fisher was born in Chicago and moved to Sarasota in 5th grade. She is currently a senior here at Riverview. During her junior year, she took Marine Science 1 with Mrs. Rudge. During the class she found a great interest in the subject, and decided to continue on to marine 2 and Stars to Starfish. Sammi enjoys art and spends time working at Panera. After she graduates she wishes to go to school in New York City to study advertising and marketing.
Rachael Gardner is a senior at Riverview High school in the Stars to Starfish Program. Besides being in the internship, she is a squad leader for the Highland Dance team at school and has been dancing outside of school for 8 years. In addition to dancing she also enjoys going to the beach and surfing with her friends. She loves working with kids and wants to attend the University of Hawaii at Manoa after high school to study marine biology.
I’m Katherine Guerrero and I am a senior at Riverview High School and not only am I in the Stars to Starfish program but also in the Marine Club at Riverview. I took the first year of Marine Science my junior year and fell in love with it. I thought the Stars to Starfish program would be an amazing experience since I want to continue studying Marine Biology at FIU and make a career out of it. I also love knowing that I am teaching the future generation and maybe inspiring them to study about the amazing marine life.
Hey, I’m Laura Hernandez and I’m a senior at Riverview High School. I was born and raised in Cuba until I was 7 years old and moved to the United States. My culture says a lot about me, specifically on eating food, but it allows me to cherish the possibilities that I have here that I didn’t have there. The Stars to Starfish program really exemplifies the possibilities that we have here at Riverview. The program allows me to interact with marine life, to learn and share my knowledge with others. This great internship program allows me to be a part of the school and ocean life.
Collin Garofalo was born and raised in Sarasota FL Siesta Key. He has always been raised around the ocean and always have loved it. Collin spends his free time around the water, enjoying many hobbies like; swimming, surfing, and snorkeling. Collin wants to attend UF or FAU and plans to stay in the scientific field. He plans to study bio with pre-med and plans to become a pediatric dentist.
Emily Hoffberger is 16 years old and a senior at Riverview High School. She was born in Detroit, Michigan. Now lives in Sarasota, Florida. As she graduates she plans on attending college. Hopefully FSU, UCF, or USF. She spends her free time volunteering at Sarasota Memorial Hospital and also has a job at Abel’s Ice Cream. Her dream is to be in the Medical field
Sydney Hoffberger is a senior at Riverview High School. She is 16 years old and has lived in Sarasota for almost 2 years. She took Marine 1 and is excited to be taking Marine 2 and be in the Stars to Starfish program. Although she enjoys working with kids and learning about the ocean she hopes to have a career in the medical field.
Erin Johnson is a senior at Riverview High School. She was born here in Sarasota, Florida. She grew up on the beach, living on Siesta Key, she was always out boating, wake boarding, basically anything outdoors. She rows for Sarasota Crew and takes advantage of getting outside and getting active whenever she can. She wants to go into something along the lines of marine science or anything that she can get in the ocean and interact with the marine life. Her dream is to attend the University of Hawaii Manoa, She is in charge of the freshwater tank in the aqua dome.
Austin Katz grew up with a love to be around and in the water. His family moved to Sarasota seven years ago. He attended Cardinal Mooney High school then transferred to Riverview his junior year. Austin and his older siblings are all State Champions in swimming. He is a member of the USA National Junior Team. Austin placed fifth at the United States Olympic Trials in June. He has also won a silver at the Junior Pan Pacific games in Hawaii and a bronze at the Junior World Championships in Singapore, both for Team USA. Austin’s passion for the water carries over to studying marine life and he hopes to aid the spread of knowledge about life in the water.
Krissy Kruk is a junior at Riverview High school. She joined the stars to starfish program this year and has loved every second of it! Besides working with the program, Krissy has played soccer since she was five. She also enjoys little kids and makes money by babysitting small kids. Other than that, Krissy values family and friends very much and likes to spend her free time with friends.
Audrey Mazaeda was born and raised in Sarasota, Florida, and is a Junior at Riverview High School. She has been playing tennis since the age of eight and plays for the Varsity Tennis Team at Riverview. She has been doing volunteer work at Sarasota Memorial Hospital for the past 2 years, and volunteering at Buddy Up Tennis for the past 3 years teaching children and young adults with Down Syndrome how to play tennis. She is part of the Marine club, Papillon Club, Connections Club, and National English Honor Society at Riverview. She is a certified SCUBA diver and enjoys doing dives often and traveling. She finds marine science/sea life to be very interesting and loves interacting/spending time with kids.
Zach is a senior at Riverview High School. He is planning on attending SCF later this year to college level classes. Zach works at Heritage Oaks Country Club as a host and enjoys going to the beach and hanging out with friends. After this year Zach plans on joining the Marine Corps as a reservist while attending college.
Kyle Powers is 17 years old. He was born in Sarasota and goes to Riverview High. He is a senior this year and is on the varsity football team for his 3rd year. Kyle have grown up on the water fishing, swimming, or relaxing at the sand bars. He entered the marine internship due to his love for marine live and to further his knowledge about it. He finds it interesting how we know more about space than about our own oceans. Kyle enjoys Stars to Starfish because of teaching young kids, the animals, and expanding his own knowledge about the marine life.
Lauren Shableski is a Junior at Riverview High School. She was born and raised in Sarasota, Florida and has always loved the ocean. After taking Marine Science I as a sophomore, she wanted to continue into Marine Science II and join the Stars to Starfish program. Once she graduates in 2018 she wants to attend University of South Florida and get her degree in childhood education.
Sara Shaffer is a senior at Riverview High School located in Sarasota Florida where she was born and raised. Sara considers herself a leader and displays it in her role as Vice President of Marine Club. In her free time Sara enjoys volunteering at Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium, going to theme parks and spending time with her friends. Sara aspires to go to USF Sarasota-Manatee for their Biology program with Mote Marine Laboratory. Sara’s dream is to work at SeaWorld Orlando with the dolphins and pilot whales. Sara’s favorite animal is an Orca whale.
Lauren Shanley is a senior at Riverview High School. This is her first year in the Stars to Starfish Program and she enjoys it! She loves learning about marine science and teaching little kids about it. Outside of school she surfs and also is on the colorguard team for Riverview. After high school, she wants to attend the University of Hawaii and study criminology.
Giulia Thompson is a junior at Riverview High School. This year is her first year as a stars to starfish intern and she’s enjoyed every second of it! Marine Science is her favorite subject and being able to teach younger children about the basic marine principals is the highlight of her day. Besides for her internship, Giulia dances on the highland dance team in the Riverview Kiltie Band and on the Soul Studios competition team.
Brandon Thorpe is a Senior at Riverview and this is his first year in the Stars to Starfish Program. He was born in Hawaii, and then later moved to Rhode Island when he was only 3 weeks old. He lived in Rhode Island until he was 12 and moved to Sarasota in the summer of8th Grade. At school, Brandon is involved in National Science Honor Society, National Art Honor Society, and Mu Alpha Theta (National Math Honor Society) and has been since the start of junior year. His favorite subject is math and aspires to become a secondary math teacher once finished college. In addition to math, Brandon’s passion is the sport of bowling. He has been to nationals for the past 4 consecutive years and holds a 210 average. He hopes to attend a university in the Midwest on a bowling scholarship enabling him to bowl collegiately.
Kevin Washburn is 17 years old and a senior at Riverview High School and is now in Marine Science II honors. He was born and raised in Sarasota, FL and has always found marine life quite interesting. Aside from school, he works as a food runner/busser at Evie’s Tavern/Grill on Bee Ridge Road. He also loves to go wave running on jet skis and hopes to own one someday. He hopes to get his SCUBA license soon as well so he can eventually go diving with his brother.
Ali Wendell is a senior at Riverview High School who has lived in Sarasota her whole life. She works at the fountains a home for the elderly. When she is not working she enjoys spending time with friends. She is in the aquaponics section of the AquaDome in the Stars to Starfish program. She plans to attend UF to go to veterinarian, she sometimes volunteers at the animal shelter.
Travis Matthews is a twelfth grade student at Riverview High in Sarasota. He works a part time job at the gym and enjoys meeting new people with the many new and similar interests. Travis’s passion for marine biology comes from the time he spent on the beach where he was raised. After graduating high school, he plans to attend and study at University of Florida.
Marcella Yukniewicz is a senior at Riverview High School, and is a proud member of the Stars to Starfish program. She was born in California, though she was raised in New Jersey. After moving to Florida recently, she joined the marine biology club at school, took marine biology 1 and later joined the Stars to Starfish program. Photography has always been a passion, her main focus being animals. She volunteers at the Humane Society of Sarasota, and is currently working as an after school counselor at Gulf Gate Elementary School. Her love for animals and photography is a major influence in her career choice and she hopes to study photography in college.
Hi my name is Carly A.A. I was born and raised in Sarasota,Fl . I grew up on Siesta Key & Long Boat Key! I love to make really cool artwork and take some awesome photographs around Sarasota. My favorite thing to take pictures of is the sunset on Siesta Key! My favorite animals are elephants,octopuses, dolphins, & other sea creatures. I joined Stars To Starfish because I always loved learning about the sea life and I honestly want to become a Marine Biologist when I’m older and hopefully one day I’ll have my own aquarium! #AlwaysBelieve!
Brenden is working on his bio and will update it later this week.
My name is Alli Fuchs and I’m currently a junior at Riverview high school. I play for the JV girl’s soccer team and am part of the coexistence club as well as the yoga club. I’m really into music and art. Outside of school I sing around town at open mic nights and other gigs. I’m learning guitar and piano and taking AP music theory this year, along with AP art.
My name is Marshall Germond and I am a junior at Riverview High School. I was born here in Sarasota Florida on May 4th, 2000. I lived here until I was four and then moved to Dothan, Alabama. I stayed there until I was eight then moved back here to Sarasota in the third grade and have lived here ever since. I have one dog named Roxy and like to spend time with friends, be on the water, or play lacrosse. I have played lacrosse for four years and am planning on going to college for it and to pursue getting a Doctorate in Physical Therapy and specializing in orthopedics and athletic injuries. I am involved with the community volunteering at Mote Marine Lab and Aquarium, starting, Teen Court, being a cashier at Sky Zone Trampoline Park and helping little kids learn lacrosse for the first time.
Kassie Henderson is a 16 year old, 11th grade student at Riverview. She is part of the IB Career Program at school for International Business. Kassie became part of the Stars to Starfish Internship this year due to her love for marine life, beach and interacting with children. In her spare time she hangs out with friends, family and goes boating. Kassie is looking to continue her education at a university to get a degree in International Business and Marketing
Hi, my name is Miah Lopez and i am senior at Riverview High School in Sarasota Florida. I have been living in Florida for 17 years. I joined the Sarasota YMCA Sharks when i was in 5th grade and have been swimming ever since. I love going to the beach and hanging out with my friends. I am very involved with the community such as being a Mote volunteer and volunteering at swim meets. I plan to further my education and swimming career at Florida Atlantic University next year.
Jack is working on his bio and will update it later this week.
My name is Marissa McCartney and I am a senior at Riverview High School. I was born and raised in Sarasota, Fl. I spend all the time I can at Siesta Key beach. When I was younger my dad taught me how to fish and I’ve loved it ever since! My favorite class is Marine Science. I enjoy learning about all of the different types of marine animals. I can’t wait to teach children about marine life. After graduating high school this year I plan on attending college at USF in Tampa!
Hi, my name is Seth Morton and I am in eleventh grade at Riverview High School. I was born in Georgia; however, I moved to Sarasota, Florida at the age of four years old and have lived here ever since. I am currently a club member for Riverview Fights Cancer Club, Cornerstone Club, an officer for Coexistence Club, and an intern for the Stars to Starfish Club. I am very interested in history and sports, and particularly football.
Hi my name is Daniel Nissan I am senior at Riverview High School and this is my first year with interning with Stars to Starfish. I am very involved in my community I’ve held 3 positions: president, communications vice president and youth group adviser in my local youth group called Safety. I also volunteer at teen court as a bailiff and lawyer. I have a passion for everything health and fitness. I frequently go to the gym with my friends and lift heavy things. Growing up, my brother owned many fish tanks and had many reptiles. Seeing this as kid spiked my interest in marine life and animals so naturally I took marine science. Overall I am excited for this year and looking forward to learning more about marine life!
Hi my name is Andrew O’Grady and I’m a junior at Riverview High School. I row for Sarasota Crew and I enjoy fishing. I like to play chess and enjoy going to the beach with friends. I drink a lot of chocolate milk and I eat an unnecessary amount of steak. My favorite animal is easily the triceratops and I enjoy reading fine poetry on the beach.
HI I am Natalie Raszka and I am seventeen years old. I am president of student council at Riverview high school and have been for the last two years. I love setting a good example for others and being a leader to those around me. I also am apart of Rho kappa; National Spanish honor society, Quill and scroll, National Spanish honor society, and National honor society. I like staying busy and involved in school and plan to continue to in college. I plan on going to a state university in Florida where I can major in health science and receive my doctorate in physical therapy. Outside of school I spend a lot of time with my family. I have three little brothers, two dogs, and live with my mom and dad. In my free time I hang out with my friends, go to the beach, see movies, and babysit to earn money. I hope you enjoyed getting to know me and I can wait to share my knowledge about marine science with every single one of you!
My name is John Saba. I am 17 years young. I love marine life and the water. I like to go snorkeling in the water, especially in the Caribbean. My favorite marine animal is the tiger shark. GURRRRRRR
Emily Thompson is a senior at Riverview High School. She was born in Orlando, Florida but moved to Sarasota, FL at age 5. She has been a part of the Riverview Golf, basketball, and softball team over her 4 years here. Emily volunteers at the humane society of Sarasota County on her free time. When she isn’t volunteering she is out on the water either fishing or boating. After high school she plans to attend FGCU and major in biology to later on become at Vet. Her favorite marine animal is a shark because she believe they are really underestimated and beautiful creatures!