New Jersey

Northern NJ

Federica

I’m currently a rising senior in high school who loves reading, baking, and running. I’m also a huge fan of the movies and spending time outdoors. I’ve always loved being active despite my scoliosis diagnosis. I was diagnosed with mild scoliosis in fifth grade but it quickly grew worse within a year. After seeing a specialized doctor, I was fitted for a stiff back brace that I had to wear every night for the following two years. After about a year of not wearing the brace, my curve hadn’t gotten any better and I felt a lot of pain since I was also diagnosed with kyphosis. I decided surgery was the best option for me and I underwent a successful spinal fusion this past July. Recovery was definitely challenging, but after about 8 weeks the new school year was beginning and I felt strong enough to join my school’s cross country team that fall.


Being a group leader means something special to me because I understand how important is to have someone with a shared experience be a good model and guide through stressful times. When I had my spinal fusion last year, I reached out to a family friend who underwent the procedure and answered my every question. A few months after my procedure, another family friend a few years younger than me was about to have the same surgery and was extremely nervous and filled with questions. I remembered how comforting it was to have somebody around my age help me navigate a pretty confusing time and I was so happy that I could do the same for someone else. Knowing that I have the power to help other girls in a similar situation is something I wish to exercise by being a group leader.