Raytheon Honors Mr. Ernesto Somoza

By Kevin Salazar

Ernesto Somoza

Pueblo High School’s very own Mr. Ernesto Somoza, who teaches graphic design and sponsors numerous clubs, has been named Raytheon’s Teacher of the Year, among the dozens of applicants from many high schools in the Tucson area.

After being nominated in August by Pueblo colleague, economics teacher Ms. Mary Wallace, Somoza endured several levels of eligibility—and in the end, received the call that informed him that he was one of three teachers who would receive a $5,000 grant.

Somoza said, “I was eventually notified that I was a finalist, which made me really happy.” He paused and added, “Then, I had to be at my best during a Zoom interview—competing against other finalists.”

He added, “I almost missed the phone call the next day that informed me that I was the recipient of the award. I kept ignoring a call during first period because I didn’t recognize the call number and name. But, luckily, I eventually answered my phone a few times later and learned of my award.”

This is not Somoza’s first time at being honored by local organizations. He has been recognized by the TUSD media, Tucson Values Teachers and by the University of Arizona.

“Being recognized for what I do at Pueblo is truly elating,” Somoza said. “My job is challenging, although I’ve never looked at it as a job because it’s too much fun.” He paused and added, “All teachers work hard to inspire their students and to prepare them for the future. I wish I could share this award with everybody.”

Besides dedicating his school day as a graphic teacher for the past six years, Somoza also sponsors/teachers the Bicycle Club, the Hiking Club and also volunteers his time for various other projects, including district and community leaders.

“Our [Pueblo] students need to compete with others across the city,” Somoza said, “and this grant money will help me afford the equipment necessary to expedite this process.”

Somoza and his students recently began to design and create T-shirts for various Pueblo clubs after purchasing equipment necessary for such a venture.

“There’s so much more I need in my classroom to compete with other high schools’ graphic design programs,” Somoza said, “but I feel confident that we’re on our way. I want Pueblo to be the district and community leader in this field.”

Somoza is currently applying for another grant award that would help him achieve this status. He encourages other educators to apply for grants in their subject matter because “they’re out there.” These grants, he asserts, will make positive changes in students’ learning.

“I see how engaged students are when they’re learning graphic design with state of the art equipment,” said Somoza, “This enthusiasm and engagement really does change their perspectives and turns otherwise disinterested students into individuals who truly want to learn and share their knowledge with others. This contagion is absolutely amazing to observe.”

Ms. Mary Wallace, who nominated Somoza for this award, said, “Ernie [Somoza] is the most amazing STEM [Science, Technology, Engineering and Math] teacher I have ever met! He helps everybody selflessly with his knowledge of technology.”

With a future full of new adventures and new projects, Somoza shares his happiness for what he does for a living.

“What I do [at Pueblo] just happens to award me a paycheck every two weeks,” he said. “The real reward is preparing students for success and instilling them with the kind of knowledge with which they can graduate and use forever.”

From Paper & Pencil To Virtual Reality

By Alina Cuen and Jacquelyn Gutierrez (Beginning Journalism)

Mr. Somoza with some of his CTE Students

As the world grows it advances and gets technical. We’ve gone from brick phones to smart phones in a short period of time. Even education has evolved to using smart technology as well, such as 3-D printers. Robots are beginning to take jobs. This is the 21st Century.

Not too long ago, Pueblo’s women’s sports teams convened at the football field for a picture when they had realized a drone flying over their head was actually taking the picture. Mr. Ernesto Somoza, the graphic and web design teacher as well as the freshman communication media technology (CMT) teacher here at Pueblo, was responsible for this modern way to take pictures—and he is always teaching students in his classroom the latest in technology.

“Technology can fundamentally improve anything,” said Somoza. “I know that a lot of our students use their cell phones during class, so I started using this thing called “Poll me” for their bell work question. They just text their response, and it gives them credit.”

One of Somoza’s latest technological tools is the 3-D printer. It creates three-dimensional objects in which layers of material are formed under computer control to create an object.

“I want to stay current to what my students like, that’s why I got into 3-D printing,” Somoza said.

His first attempt to using the 3-D printer wasn’t so easy.

“First, it was very challenging, then easy then difficult again,” said Somoza. “However, it all takes some practice—as I teach my students. They definitely contribute to the learning of this new technology.”

The first creation, in November, was a cookie-cutter, then a skull, which took three days to complete. Then, there were the plant holders, phone case, and even a map of Europe. The U.S. Capitol building was fun, Somoza said, because it could be taken apart and then reassembled.

“I believe every classroom should have one of these [3-D printers] because of how engaged this device keeps students,” Somoza said. “We [teachers] need to stay ahead of times.”

There are numerous applications for a 3-D printer, Somoza added. For example, student would be able to dissect a “fake” frog instead of the “real” thing.

Somoza also has virtual reality goggles, and just by wearing them, students are “transported” to different cities and different continents—not to mention different planets!

“I took a student to Pluto the other day!” Somoza said. “It’s amazing how I could change every student’s perspective on the world, if only I had 30 of these!”

Next year, Somoza hopes to stay ahead of technology and teach his students and himself new ways of improving education.

“We’ll see what next school year brings,” Somoza said.

Get the latest news from Mr. Somoza’s CMT class by following him on Instagram.

Look In The Sky…It’s A Bird…It’s A Plane…No, It’s Our Drone!

By Angelita Delcido

Pueblo Drone Flyby

On March 29, 2017, during 4th period (and first lunch for some), Pueblo’s CTE Graphic and Web Design teacher, Mr. Ernesto Somoza, gathered all of the spring sports girls’ teams—including soccer, basketball, volleyball, softball (as well as Cheer)—to celebrate their upcoming “AIA Tony Komadina Award” with a group picture.

This picture was taken a little unusual; in fact, a drone snapped the picture in effort to “stay in the current world,” Somoza explained. “[The drone] is a fairly new consumer product,” he added. “A year ago, the drone wasn’t as prominent as now.”

Freshman (Class of 2020) Jacquelyn Gutierrez, a member of Cheer this season, was part of the crowd.  “It was exciting to be part of this event,” Gutierrez said. “I felt inclusive with Pueblo—like I was a member of this great school, like I was really connected to the school. As a freshman, this is a great feeling because I think we all come into high school and feel a little left out. But, that’s all changed now.”

Another freshman (Class of 2020) Alina Cuen, member of cheer, also took part of the crowd photo and said, “I felt special and proud to represent Pueblo. The drone was definitely a unique way to take our pictures. Mr. Somoza was brilliant to have thought of this approach.”

Sophia Shivers, a freshman (Class of 2020), was on this season’s girls’ JV basketball team said, “Even though it was really hot that afternoon, I felt cool to represent Pueblo’s girls’ sports programs.  The drone was cool, too, and I think that this is how future group pictures should be taken.”

Sophomore (Class of 2019) Yazmin Almazan, a member of the girls’ JV volleyball team this season, said that she felt a sense of unity with the other girls at Pueblo, and she loved the drone!

“The drone took some very unique shots of us—pictures that a person would never be able to take. I hope that the drone is used again to take more interesting pictures,” Almazan said.

Pueblo, Cholla Attend CTE Meeting



By Felicity Aguilar and Yisela Nuñez-Molina

JTED hosted an officer training here at Pueblo and invited CTE students and teachers from Cholla High School to attend. More than 50 students from PHS and another approximately 35 from Cholla were in attendance in Pueblo’s library on Monday, September. 14, 2016.

Pueblo CTE Students

Funded by the Pima County JTED Department, this event lasted the entire school day and included students from JTED/CTE classes, along with their teachers. The following Pueblo organizations were present: Educators Rising; HOSA; Skills USA (Graphics, Photography, Auto, Media, Printing); Yearbook; National Technological Honor Society; and DECA.

One of the primary objectives of this event each year is to help prepare students to become leaders in the future. They have been selected as officers for their clubs/classes or will be selected in the future. A variety of activities kept students from both schools interacting with their peers and engaged with analytical and evaluative tasks and hypothetical scenarios.

Rosa Duran, a senior from Cholla High School, said, “This training has truly taught me to work equally among my peers and to be respected as much as I respect their opinions.”

According to Pueblo’s CTE site coordinator, Dr. Maria Bicknell, another one of the primary objectives of this workshop is to instill within students the empowerment regarding knowledge and leadership.

Bicknell, along with Cholla’s CTE site coordinator, Ms. Lucy Swift, spent weeks of planning and organizing this workshop for both schools.

Cholla CTE Students

“Teamwork—that’s what this workshop is partly about,” Swift said. “My students [from Cholla] and I are very pleased at the organization of this event and how well students behaved and responded to the challenges that were presented to them.”

Mr. Curt Bertelsen, the training inspector from Pima County JTED, once again hosted an electrifying and engaging display of parliamentary procedure for students.

David Molina, a junior who attended this meeting, said, “Mr. Bertelsen’s presentation gives us students the skills and knowledge to successfully run our clubs.” He added, “The knowledge that I will take back will shape the way I help run the auto club for the next two years. He was truly an amazing and unforgettable speaker who knows how to keep students interested and thinking.”

Cholla graphics and design teacher, Mr. Mike Hensley, said, “I believe that it is very important and inspiring for students to see peers not only from their school but also to learn what students from other schools are doing in their CTE classes.”

Destyni Payan, a sophomore from Cholla who is enrolled in her school’s yearbook class, said, “I am returning to my school tomorrow with a new sense of purpose and will be even more positive about what I am doing. When I see all of these great students from both Pueblo and Cholla, I am really proud to be in a CTE class knowing that I’m learning the latest in technology and putting what I am learning into practice.”

“I want to become a better leader for my club and open my arsenal to new opportunities,” said Estevan Medrano, president of the auto club. “This workshop really is a great idea and offers us students new perspectives which is always a good thing.”

Maria Servellon, a junior who is president of HOSA, said that she learned a great deal at this workshop including how to properly conduct a meeting.

“Today’s experience was positive on so many levels, although I wish that we Pueblo students could have interacted with our Cholla guest students more,” Servellon said.

Jirsey Duron, a senior at Pueblo, who is the secretary of Educators Rising (sponsored by Ms. Bonnie Stull), said that the workshop was a lot of fun and a great learning experience at the same time.

“I learned how to work well with my peers and how to be a positive role model,” Duron said. “We need more of these workshops—not just CTE members but for all students in high school. Diplomacy is way beyond important in our violent world.”

Warriors Solve Crime Scene

By Yamilex Garcia and Omar Quintana

Crime Scene Staged For Pueblo High School Forensics Class
Crime Scene Staged for Pueblo High School Forensics Class

On Wednesday and Thursday, February 10 and 11, Pueblo’s forensic class, taught by Ms. Elaine Straub, experienced their third live crime scene; students were required to examine a car accident and apply the skills they have learned in class throughout this school year.

Straub said that this particular crime scene will test her students’ critical thinking skills.

“This is a higher caliber crime scene than the previous scenarios this school year,” Straub said. “There will be a few more this school year that will further challenge students’ critical thinking skills.”

Students were required to collect evidence and examine their discoveries, including taking photographs, taking measurements and fingerprinting.

Senior Rocio Rodriguez said, “Taking part in a simulated crime scene is so much better than reading out of a textbook. We students are able to actually see what happened and use critical thinking skills and making inferences from the clues. It makes so much more sense and practical to let us figure things out for ourselves.”

Straub added that Ms. Marie Little, who teaches auto, and her students helped stage this simulated crime scene. Several other teachers used this location for their own curriculum, including Ms. Emma Tarazon, whose students took various pictures in a variety of light settings, and Mr. Rana Medhi, who took his creative writing students to the scene so that they could write about a story about their observations.

“On a gorgeous day like today, students really like being out of the classroom and writing stories,” said senior Mia Contreras. “More teachers should get their students outdoors and take advantage of all that our school offers.”

Mr. Ernie Somoza’s CMT (Communications Media Technology) freshmen students used the drone to shoot an aerial of simulated crime scene. (Video below) Sophomore Hector Valenzuela and freshman Andrew Romero controlled the drone, and sophomore Victor Llanos edited the video.

Warriors Urged To Attend Town Hall Meeting

America Cardenas Pueblo El Guerrero 

By América Cárdenas


Students, teachers and parents are urged to attend a Town Hall meeting regarding the future of CTE programs on the evening of Wednesday, October 21 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Catalina High School auditorium.

Pueblo CTE Auto Program
Auto Program at Pueblo would be affected by budget cuts.

This meeting will discuss the recent funding cuts approved by the Governor’s Office for the 2016-2017 school year and how this will negatively affect Career and Technical Education programs throughout the state.


State senators Steve Farley and David Bradley will be present to discuss how the cuts will affect school districts, including Pueblo Magnet High School.


Please plan to attend this meeting. Your voice and opinions will definitely count.