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.”
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.”