Academy Motivates, Inspires Students

By Daeyalina Moreno and Marla Terminel

Inagural Class Of Pueblo College Preparatory Academy

Pueblo’s College Preparatory Academy, co-coordinated with counselor Dr. Teresa Toro, is an open access program, and has been helping many students to prepare for collegiate futures.

This program has spiked the interest of over 200 Pueblo students who are active members; over six years of preparation was necessary to make the academy become a reality. Students must participate in their selection of 18 AP honors, dual enrollment and culturally relevant classes, as well as participate in volunteer programs.

“This [Academy] is something that I’ve wanted to do for a very long time,” said Toro. She added that her efforts would not have come to fruition if it were not for the co-coordination with Assistant Principal Mr. Rafael Montaño and Principal Mr. Frank Rosthenhausler.

Toro said that the main goal of this program is to help guide students earn as much scholarship money as possible by pushing their boundaries and setting high expectations.

She said, “I want my students to dream big and help expose them to big opportunities.”

Sophomores Giselle-Paris Aubrey and David Cañez have big dreams for their futures, and they admitted that they wanted the challenges that the Academy offers students.

“I want to go to the U of A,” said Aubrey, “and the Academy is going to help me get there.”

Cañez said, “The courses [in the Academy] are rigorous, but I’m up for the challenges that the Academy is going to provide me and to prepare me for a great college future.”

Despite the academic benefits, students are willing to work hard and address all of the stress that committing to the Academy may cause.

 “A lot of students may think that they want to join the academy,” said Cañez, “but they need to make sure that they can commit to its rigorous pace.”

She added that students who want to be in the Academy are welcome to attend support groups. Tutoring also is available to Academy students before and after school, everyday throughout the school year.

She added that there is support for all students who are taking rigorous classes.

Toro wants everybody to know that the study groups are all year, and held in the Parent and Student Café; also, Game Day is on Mondays; walk-in Distress groups are held on Tuesdays after school; and tutoring is every day during “zero” hour in the library.

“I want my students to feel like they’re part of a family and that we support them in their post-secondary endeavors,” said Toro.

Two Class Of 2019 Seniors Receive Dorrance Scholarship

By Jacquelyn Gutierrez

Hector Gamez & Yazmin Almazan

Two very talented and deserving Class of 2019 seniors found out on April 27 that they were the recipients of the prestigious Dorrance Scholarship.

Yazmín Almazán and Héctor Gámez were chosen among hundreds of applications. Only 12 students are selected per in-state university (the University of Arizona; Arizona State University; and Northern Arizona University).

Almazán said, “I had my interview on a Friday; the very next day, I was notified. I was very excited to learn this because there was a lot of competition—unfortunately even from some of my close friends at Pueblo. For a few years, no students from Pueblo were awarded the Dorrance scholarship, and to be one of two students from Pueblo to receive the award this year makes this reception even more exciting.”

Gámez said, “I found out that I received the Dorrance scholarship while I was doing yardwork with my father. I was so excited that I screamed, and I scared my mother.”

Both students plan to attend the University of Arizona following graduation.

Almazán will be studying molecular and cellular biology, and she plans to pursue a minor physiology.

“I’ve been extremely interested in this field for several years due to my experience in biotechnology with Dr. Andrew Lettes in my sophomore year,” Almazán said. “I also want to credit Mr. Bill Richards, my honors biology teacher during my freshman year. He persuaded me to enroll in Dr. Lettes’ class, and I’m so glad that I did because of all of the new knowledge that I would be introduced to—as well as all of the opportunities Dr. Lettes encouraged me to take advantage of.”

Over the past few years, Almazán has fervidly been involved with summer workshops and internships at the University of Arizona regarding biomedical research.

“This collegiate experience really inspired to further my aspirations into research and medicine,” Almazán said.

As for Gamez… This is his second year at Pueblo. Prior to that, he lived in Sonora, Mexico, and knew very little English prior to coming to Tucson. This year, as a senior, he is enrolled in four advanced placement classes, included AP English. Following graduation, Gamez plans to pursue a career in neuroscience—specifically to become an orthopedic surgeon.

“A lot of family members have bad backs, and I think this inspired to pursue orthopedics—because I might be able to help them,” Gamez said.

“I knew nobody when I came to Pueblo, and there was already the language barrier to overcome,” Gamez said. “Receiving this scholarship is an affirmation of all of the hard work it took to acclimate to Pueblo and to life in the United States.”

Both Almazan and Gamez are eligible to participate in the Dorrance Study Abroad Program, which lasts for one semester—an experience that introduces students to different cultures, both in theory (academically) and in practice (the study abroad experience itself)—which contributes to global citizenship.

Juniors, Seniors: ACT Test Dates Approaching Quickly!

By Kyle Elhard and Sasha Villa

Completing college applications can be a fairly difficult process for our seniors, whether it involves the actual application process or passing entrance exams. Also, juniors should be preparing for college since they will be seniors in less five months.

Mr. Antonio Garcia, also known simply as “Tony” by most seniors, is one of Pueblo’s career counselors and is promoting ACT workshops for the remainder of the semester.

Seniors will be able to retake the ACT on April 14; most colleges accept students with a score of 20 and higher. If seniors scored lower than this, they are very encouraged to retake the test next month.

Juniors can take the test for the first time on April 3.

Both seniors and juniors are encouraged to enroll in an ACT Prep Workshop here at Pueblo on March 14 and March 28 from 2:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m. in the College and Career Center.

“The [ACT] workshops help students to understand the structure of tests,” said Garcia, “as well as the importance of them.” He added, “It’s not that students aren’t ready for the ACT workshops, it’s that they’re not prepared.”

Junior Candy Rodriguez is one of hundreds in her Class of ’19 who will be taking the ACT test on April 3rd.

“I’m very much looking forward to the test,” Rodriguez said. “I’ll be preparing for this test over spring break so that I can achieve a maximum score. I really want to score at least 20 on my first try.”

Warriors Get Hint Of Future At College Night

  

by Paula Fierros & Celestina Marinez

On Oct. 24, several thousand high school seniors (and even some juniors!) attended College Night, once again held at the Tucson Convention Center—a golden opportunity for our Southern Arizona near-high school graduates to be offered hundreds of collegiate choices and opportunities.

Nearly 50 of our Pueblo Warriors attended this two-hour evening event, giving students enough time to tour the booths for each college. There were nearly 200 colleges and universities represented at this event.

Class of 2018 Senior Carlos Chavez at Tucson College Night

Senior Ashely Andrade said she enjoyed looking at the U of A booth—which offered her education for her career interest in nursing.

Senior Robert Marinez also enjoyed the U of A booth since it offered engineering.

Senior Iram Arce said, “I spent a lot of time talking to representatives from the University of New Mexico not necessarily about that school’s academic classes but because of the great personality of the representative. He didn’t treat us condescendingly, and I picked up a couple of tips about college while I was talking to him.”

Seniors who have an idea of their future career have simplified their options based on what universities had to offer.

Senior Adela Garados said that she enjoyed speaking with multiple college and university booths.

“I really want to study foreign languages such as Italian and French,” Garados said. “It’s difficult to find universities and colleges that offer languages as a career.”

Plenty of high school juniors who attended College Night, as they are already becoming curious about their futures.

“Attending College Night was refreshing and definitely eye-opening,” junior Laura Conde said. “Even though I won’t be graduating for another year and a half, I am taking my time deciding where to attend college when I graduate in 2019. It’ll be here sooner than later.”

Pueblo Welcomes Mr. Alejandro Menchaca

 

by Kyra Ycedo 

With the arrival of many new faculty and staff members, Pueblo welcomes new College and Career support interventionist, Mr. Alejandro Menchaca, to the Warrior family. 

 

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Menchaca taught two years of Spanish before moving to Arizona approximately two years later, where he taught another five years of Spanish. However, despite leaving his high school job, he still wanted to continue work with secondary education students due to his passion for teaching. 

 

“Working in [high] schools with students is great because they are very optimistic and very energetic,” said Menchaca.

 

“I really like Pueblo because of Dr. Romero’s leadership,” Menchaca said. He paused and added, “I also like working at Pueblo because it’s a South side community, and I’m able to relate to the Latin community.”

 

This year, Menchaca hopes to work closely with students, teachers, parents and the community to help with whatever he can. However, for now he has a lot of advice for our seniors. 

 

“I recommend they [seniors] participate in events that I am helping to plan,” he said. “Our seniors also need to complete their FASFA, learn about college and the many career opportunities. At the same time, they also need to ask their teachers about their college experiences. I hope that the events that I help coordinate this school year will allow our seniors to better prepare for post-high school life.”

College Fair, Cohorts Give Students ‘Wake-Up Call’

   

by Analicia Bake & Brianna Metzler

The first College Fair of the school year took place during second period on Sept. 13, a treat for this year’s Class of 2018 seniors.

Alisa Verdugo, a senior, said, “We want to break the negative stigmas of how to apply to college, so if you [students] need any help applying, please come see us.”

Practically all of this year’s 300+ seniors had an opportunity to speak with various college representatives and military branches—a golden chance for them to explore their options for their future.

Many colleges were available to Pueblo seniors, including Arizona Christian University, Central Arizona College, New Mexico State College, Pima Community College, Universal Technical Institute and Prescott College along with the several military branches present.

Mr. Alejandro Menchaca, Pueblo’s new College and Career coordinator, said, “There are opportunities that students don’t know exist—until they come to events like this.”

“Seniors need to know all their options to find what their life purpose is in order to find their passion,” said senior counselor Ms. Teresa Toro. “This is the perfect time when seniors truly need to start applying for colleges and for scholarships. This Career Fair hopefully has given our seniors a wake-up call.”

An even earlier wake-up call occurred during the second week of this quarter, on Friday, Aug. 11. Principal Dr. Augustine Romero, counselor Ms. Rachel Bopp and College and Career Center Coordinator Mr. Alejandro Menchaca hosted a cohort meeting/assembly for all four grades, definitely giving our Warriors the reveille that many of them truly needed.

Senior Ernesto Estropellan said, “Sometimes these meetings are inspiration to me—they motivate me to take my school life very seriously. With a slight case of ‘senioritis’ already, I definitely need these meetings and career fairs.”

Pueblo’s Mariachi Atzlán performed for each class prior to each cohort meeting.

“The music was great,” said sophomore Ariella Andrews. “Overall, the cohort was interesting and very educational—a lot better than I thought. I also learned a lot of things about the school year.”

Bopp delivered students valuable information about appointments to counselors’ offices, credit recovery, and necessities for students—especially seniors—to graduate.

“These kinds of [cohorts] meetings really awaken our students,” Bopp said. “Seniors need to be reminded that time goes by quickly. It’s all about meeting deadlines and preparing for their futures.”

Menchaca gave mentioned information about the PSAT for underclassmen coming up this fall.

During the cohorts, a short video played for each class in hopes of informing students to be the best they possibly can in school and in life.

After the video, Dr. Romero said to students, “[Students,] believe in who you are, have a dream, and believe in it.”

He added, at the end of the cohorts, “I’m really excited about the 2017-18 school year. I’m also very happy with our new staff, and I hope that our students take advantage of all of the great opportunities that are available to them at Pueblo.”