As the rain whipped against the windows of the on Saturday afternoon, Billy Zito sat across from me explaining how he juggles everything in his busy schedule.
“I like the pressure,” Billy said, “It motivates me.”
As Billy heads into his senior year at (SPHS), pressure is something he has plenty of. Currently fifth in his class, Billy is taking six advanced placement courses. He belongs to the National Honor Society, the Spanish National Honor Society, and Spanish Club. He is a member of the math team, plays on a player managed and coached futsal team, is co-captain of the SPHS Falcons soccer team and captain of his elite club team, the Severna Park Rowdies.
As to how he manages the responsibilities, Billy said, “It isn’t that bad. Academics always come first.”
Though Billy has not narrowed his choices of universities, he has his heart set on an Ivy League education.
Falling close behind academics is his responsibility on the soccer team. As a member of the team that went all the way to the semi-finals in last years state tournament, Billy is leading one of the most competitive teams SPHS has seen in years.
With three sophomores on the team, it is more important than ever, that Billy, as captain, step-up and lead the way, setting an example for every player.
Billy is quick to point out that there is less pressure on the captains than in years past. He believes the team has a more balanced attack and has the ability to come together as a team in a way that is not always possible. With that combination, he believes they have a good shot at winning States this year.
Still, juggling academics, soccer and his new leadership role on the team is not always easy. This summer, Billy worked full-time as an intern at Johns Hopkins University, constructing and testing the mechanical properties of nano composites, finally presenting his research to family, friends and professors.
At the same time, it was his responsibility, with the assistant of co-captain Cole Strong to organize summer practices and 7v7 games for his teammates.
“But I do have a life outside of the work,” Billy said.
Maybe it is the life outside of the work that helps Billy maintain the relaxed attitude he presents. Instead of working around the clock, he has prioritized social time as well.
Having the breaks, whether on a family vacation or out at the movies with friends, gives him the chance to reboot, reenergize and head into the next task ready to go.