By Steve Svetovich
Dunmore High School graduating senior Mia Chiaro is the recipient of the Lackawanna Interscholastic Athletic Association (LIAA) female scholar-athlete of the year award.
“I was really excited when I heard about this,” Mia said. “It was a big moment for me and everyone else because of all the disappointments we had in sports this year due to COVID-19. It was nice to be recognized for something after going through all of that.”
Daughter of Alyssa and Nick Chiaro, Dunmore, the scholar-athlete was a key participant at Dunmore for soccer, swimming and track and field. She was also a football cheerleader. She had a 3.8 grade point average, including a 99 average in her final two quarters.
Mia was first-team all-star for track and field in her sophomore and junior years. She was a first-team all-star for soccer once and second-team twice.
She ran the 100 meter and 300 meter hurdles and participated in the 4 by 1 and 4 by 4 for the Dunmore track and field team.
She credits her swimming coach John Andreoli for being a strong mentor. “He really cares about us,” Mia said. “He inspired us to be better. He had a talk with us that really gave us confidence and got us motivated. We became highly competitive and we kept improving to become an excellent swimming team. We had a great team bond. I will never forget the lessons learned and the spirit of our team.”
Mia, well spoken and articulate, said she will attend the University of Pittsburgh and study political science in the fall. She wants to attend law school in the future.
“I want to become a lawyer and possibly become a politician in the future,” she said. “I hope to play some club soccer at Pitt.”
Mia enjoys listening to music and is a big fan of Kanye West.
As a three-sport athlete and cheerleader, she proved to be highly versatile. “I like to be involved and active,” she said. “So that is a no brainer for me. I like being a part of something special. And as most know, being a part of any sport at Dunmore usually results in something special. The coaches here teach you so much about sports and life. And the teammates you have result in lifetime friendships. You develop a great bond with your teammates.”
Mia said she gets her competitive spirit from her parents.
“My parents always tell me nothing gets handed to you. You need to work hard to develop a competitive work ethic.”
The aspiring law student and politician lit up when speaking of her experience at Dunmore High School. “You get a lot of opportunities to express yourself and get involved at Dunmore,” she said. “You develop lifelong friendships and you are a part of something special. All of the sports you participate in at Dunmore are special.
“Our coaches and teachers at Dunmore teach us to be competitive on and off the field and in life. And this all translates to life as you transition beyond high school. It is such a great experience at Dunmore.”