Overcoming Adversity: Zach Rienecker

Zach Rienecker, one of VHS’s most intelligent seniors, is concealing a major secret. Behind his persistent grin and affable nature, he suffers from a troublesome learning disorder.  Zach has proven to overcome dyslexia, scoring a five on three of the AP exams he has taken thus far. 

Zach transferred to VHS during his freshman year, leaving his previous school in Bloomfield after being prohibited from participating in certain courses. He solemnly recalls, “I wasn’t allowed to be in any AP’s.” Despite his initial apprehension to enter a new school, Zach quickly established his place at VHS. 

A natural born leader with an ardent desire for collaboration, Zach made friends right off the bat. He immersed himself in academics and various other extracurricular activities, uncovering his many interests throughout the process. He happily reflects on freshman year, remembering how his friend Steven Macawili welcomed him as if he were a long- lost brother.  

While Zach loves spending quality time with friends, his greatest passion involves learning. He describes himself as an “extensive reader,”picking up a new book whenever he gets the chance. Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger sits atop his list of all-time favorite books. 

Zach’s ardor for reading is nothing new. It began during his youth, when a relative gifted him the entire Harry Potter series for his birthday. Despite his considerable struggle to complete the books due to his dyslexia, Zach ultimately achieved his goal with unwavering persistence. 

“A lot of people take reading or being able to read for granted; Since it took me a lot longer to, I appreciate it more.”

Now, sitting excitedly at the edge of his seat, Zach details his plans for the future. He emphasizes his desire to pursue government and politics at a university located within Washington D.C. Hoping to study in the hub of American politics, Zach confesses that the role of president is not for him. He concedes that the title is ultimately not worth the level of authority, and that he would much prefer a position in a bureaucracy.    

“I wish I could have a conversation with them!” exclaims Zach joyously as he describes some of his heroes including John F. Kennedy, Theodore Roosevelt, and Nelson Rockefeller. 

With his immense dedication and impressive work ethic, Zach is confident he will live up the everlasting legacies of such men.