(A story written for MTA’s “Weekly News” Newsletter in 2008)
The recipe is simple. Take one set of triplets add admission letters to five of the most prestigious high schools in the country, mix in huge serving of hard work and talent. Garnish with the love and commitment of two parent-employees of the MTA and serve.
Getting into some of the most prestigious schools in New York is hard enough, but three children heaped a triple dose of happiness on parents Hope and Seth Solomon when all three of them got accepted into not one, but two of these most prestigious high schools in the country each. Every year about 28,000 students strive for these spots that only 5,600 are able to secure. Today, Daniel, Joseph and Rebecca Solomon are 3 of the select 5,600 students that will be attending these specialized schools that have often been referred to as the “Ivy leagues of High School.” Rebecca, a science whiz was accepted into Leon M. Goldstein for Sciences and Brooklyn Tech; Joseph, a math genius got into Stuyvesant and Midwood High School and Daniel, the writer of the family can choose between Stuyvesant and Townsend Harris High School.
A lot of their success can be attributed to where they come from. Hope Solomon, their mother who has worked for NYCT for 10 years now with Track Maintenance was an exceptional student in school and she made sure that her children followed in her footsteps. “Being from Italy, my parents did not know how to read and write English which is why they insisted that I study hard and placed immense emphasis on academic excellence.” So achievement, it seems, comes to them instinctively.
Seth Solomon, who can be found in the Dept. of Strategic Planning and has been with MTA for 23 years, describes the success of his children modestly, “Anyone can do it, it’s a combination of parental support and hard work on behalf of the children, that inherently leads to success.”
One of the greatest reasons for their success, Hope believes is the presence of books. “They grew up surrounded by books, even today; Daniel is a voracious reader and averages at a book a week,” she says. “In fact they have already begun preparing for high school by starting off on their reading lists.”
Hope has always been actively involved in the academic life of her children, “I always insist on looking at their report cards even though I only see A’s on them!” At the same time, Daniel, Rebecca and Joseph are very self-sufficient and responsible; they know what they have to do and how to do it. That is clear, from their academic records and extra curricular activities. They are also peer-tutors and since their interests cover the entire gamut of their curriculum, they often help each other out with homework!
Seth Solomon points to one source of his children’s achievements, “My wife! She is always there for the, mothering three children while working full time is a daunting task. This is an achievement not only for my them, but also for her.”
Where even above average students struggle, Daniel, Joseph and Daniel, have excelled. Rebecca chose Leon M. Goldstein for Sciences; meanwhile Joseph and Daniel will attend high school in Stuyvesant. This is the first time that the triplets will be separated from each other so it will be a new experience for them.
On a side note Hope and Seth say, “Rise to the challenge and work hard, but don’t forget to have fun!” Congratulations Seth, Hope, Daniel, Joseph and Rebecca. We are so proud of you and can’t wait to see you rise to the top!