By Briana Maldonado
Centereach High School had a one of a kind event on October 26, 2017 called Race to the Rescue. The event, hosted by English teacher Ms. Fitterman in the planetarium and was mainly focused around a full-time female racer in Riverhead Racewayj, Alyssa Paprocky. Alyssa Paprocky has always been interested in cars, using hot wheels with the Barbie’s she’s owned. She’s been wanting to run on the raceway for as long as she could remember and one day a friend of her father got a car for her. At first she was rusty, a rookie in the streets but now, at age twenty three, Alyssa has accomplished a lot in her time as a full-time female racer. Race to the Rescue was an event to inspire students.
“On the track, once you put that helmet on, no one notices whether you’re a girl or a man on the track.”
Newsday has created several stories on their website about Paprocky’s success and her message to young kids. Race to the Rescue emphasized that you can be anything you want no matter of what gender you are, and that you can achieve anything if you wish. Alyssa has a job that’s considered ‘non-feminine’ in the views of many, being able to name all parts of a truck, and although she doesn’t face sexism from her male competitors, she does face sexism from fans and people who watch her.
She drives a maximum of 60 mph in her division with her Chevy Caprice, always trying to work on her stamina and speed. Centereach students and staff even got to see her car which has the Youth for Humanity logo on it, the club that helped create the event along with Ms. Fitterman. Race to the Rescue is an event meant to inspire children into doing anything they want without stereotypes abolishing dreams and to increase awareness in equality among women in typical ‘masculine-based’ activities. She’s seen little girls go up to her in awe at her car and always says along the lines of “when I’m finished with this car, you’ll be racing it, right?” She always remembers how all the little girls whose young faces brighten up when she tells them that.
Alyssa Paprocky is in need of sponsors and plans to move up her class next year in racing and gain more experience before she moves up to NASCAR. Students and staff of Centereach were able to see her car and some even go in it! She’s made an extraordinary inspiring message for all to follow. If you’re ever at Riverhead Raceway, go cheer on Alyssa Paprocky along with her message!