The newspaper annually names a total of 60 college students to its first, second and third all-academic teams, based on grades, awards and activities, leadership and public service.
Shapiro, who is from South Euclid, Ohio, and carries a 3.97 grade point average, also has been elected regional president of the Jewish student organization Hillel, becoming the first Boston College student to be so honored.
"One senses that Ari's heart as well as his head are fully in his work," said Shapiro's advisor, Assoc. Prof. William Petri (Biology), who recommended him for the USA Today honor. "Such an application of oneself and one's talents to the service of others is a hallmark of the Boston College ideal for education."
Shapiro said he was inspired by his late grandmother to found the Newton Actors Studio, a performing troupe at the Newton Senior Center that plans its next show May 9.
"I feel as if I brought her with me to Newton and that she lives on through me and this group," he said.
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