2012 graduate highlights

Class of 2012: College-bound


April 19, 2012

With graduation around the corner, the Class of 2012 is preparing for the future. Tonight, a number of graduating students will head to the Freeman Coliseum to participate in College Signing Day, one of a number of college-related events that are a part of Mayor Castro's College Week.

Below is just a sampling of students, from each high school graduating class, who are expected to attend the event. Their college plans will take them different places, from as far north as Yale University in New Haven, Conn., and the United States Military Academy Preparatory School in West Point, N.Y. to up the road to the University of Texas at Austin's McCombs School of Business.


Diana Karen Luna
Brackenridge High School

Diana will graduate from Brackenridge High School and plans to attend
Middlebury College, a small liberal arts college in rural Vermont, in the fall.
Her interest in learning about the human psychology of arriving at decisions
prompted her to choose as her area of study neuroeconomics, an emerging
field that combines the study of neuroscience and economics. She hopes to
eventually apply what she learns to government and policy.

She considers her acceptance to college one of her biggest high school
accomplishments. Before her junior year, Diana had no expectation of
pursuing her education beyond high school. However, her outlook changed
and her hopes rose after her brother received a full scholarship to a state
university. She enrolled in challenging courses and worked hard to do well.

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Christopher Aragon
Burbank High School

Christopher will graduate from the prestigious International Baccalaureate
Diploma Programme at Burbank High School. He is still weighing his
college options, which include Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem,
North Carolina, Boston University and Trinity University, here in his back
yard. He is interested in a career in communications, theater or journalism.

He has been involved in several extracurricular activities, including Drama
Club, History Club, Art Club, Model United Nations (San Antonio) and the
swim team. Last year, he advanced to the History Fair’s national competition
in Washington, D.C., in the Performance category, for his role in a play about
the writing of the Treaty of Versailles.

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Jose Renderos
Edison High School

Jose will graduate from Edison High School with honors as president of the
National Honor Society. In the fall, he plans to attend the University of
Connecticut, where he will major in economics.

He plans to work locally this summer before heading north.He counts
among his most significant high school accomplishments his
successful balancing of academics, school activities and work. In
addition to National Honor Society, Jose has participated as a member
of the Academic Decathlon and the Edison Community Leadership
Squad. He also volunteered for Irma’s Angels and Basura Bash,
a citywide cleanup event.

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Shirley Briana Tey
Fox Tech High School

Shirley will graduate from Fox Tech Law and Health Professions High
School with a host of valuable extracurricular and volunteer experiences.
In the fall, she will attend George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., where
she plans to major in pre-med and minor in philosophy and law.

Among her greatest achievements to date are internships for state Sen.
Leticia Van de Putte and for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban
Development in Washington, D.C. These positions provided a strong
professional network, allowed her to hone her communication skills and
gave her opportunities to build her work ethic. Shirley plans to return to
Washington, D.C., this summer to intern for HUD, for the third year in a row.

Read more

Raeleen JoAnn Vasquez
Highlands High School

Raeleen will graduate from Highlands High School with recognition as a
member of the National Honor Society. In the fall, she plans to attend
Colorado State University, where she will study Fish, Wildlife and
Conservation Biology and earn a master’s degree in that field.

Raeleen considers graduating from high school to be her biggest
accomplishment, in light of the obstacles and hardships she has
faced in the past four years. Helping her to see that she could attend
college was the GEAR UP college-readiness program, which provided
her with support as well as information about different colleges and
programs that helped her to make a decision about what college to attend.

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Eric Hernandez
Jefferson High School

Eric will graduate seventh in his class at Jefferson High School, with
recognition as treasurer of the National Honor Society.

Among his biggest high school accomplishments, he was able to
maintain a high grade-point average and was accepted to six
universities. In the fall, he will be attending Boston University, where
he plans to study business marketing.

In the past four years, Eric has been involved in swimming, diving and
water polo and was a member of the Student Board of Directors for the
Federal Reserve. Outside of school, he has played in the youth band at
his church and participated in the Basura Bash clean up Woodlawn
Park and the Graffiti Wipeout throughout San Antonio.

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San Juanita Rodriguez
Lanier High School

San Juanita will graduate from Lanier High School, with recognition as
president of the National Honor Society. She has been accepted to the
McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin,
where she plans to study business administration.

A member of the JROTC, she considers becoming battalion
commander her biggest high school accomplishment. The position has
allowed her to make a difference in her cadet’s lives and to bond them
together as a family. She has earned six medals and 30 ribbons during
her tenure as a member of JROTC.

Read more

Carol Alavedra
Navarro Academy

Carol graduated early this year from the self-paced Navarro Academy with a
diploma under the Distinguished Achievement Program – the highest
diploma a student can earn and the only student at the school to earn this
diploma in the past few years.

Eager to start her college career, she will begin taking courses at Palo Alto
College this summer, working toward an associate degree. Already, she
has accumulated 32 college-credit hours from San Antonio College through
the dual-credit program. She plans to transfer to a university afterward and
eventually earn a master’s degree in social work.

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Victor Dominguez
Phoenix Middle College

Victor will graduate from Phoenix Middle College and Edison High School,
his home school, with a diploma from the Distinguished Achievement
Program. He plans to attend Texas A&M-Kingsville to major in music.

He aspires to become a music teacher or instructor so he can inspire
others people to keep the art of music alive.

As a student in the Phoenix Middle College program, Victor took all his
courses at St. Philip’s College Southwest Campus, during his junior and
senior years of high school. The program allowed him to focus on learning
valuable skills in electrical trades. In the last two years of high school, he
has earned college credits while simultaneously working toward his
high school diploma.

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Kirsten S. Redmon
Sam Houston High School

Kirsten will graduate from Sam Houston High School as a member of the
National Honor Society and in the top 10 percent of her graduating class.
In the fall, she will attend the United States Military Academy Preparatory
School at West Point, where she plans to earn a degree in systems
engineering and pave her way to becoming an officer in the military.

She will be the first in her family to graduate from college and considers
being accepted to the Corps at West Point her biggest accomplishment
to date. She is the first from Sam Houston to be accepted to West Point
in the past seven years.

Read more

Andrew De Luna
Travis Early College High School

Andrew De Luna will be among Travis Early College High School’s first
graduating class – and its first valedictorian. In the fall, he plans to attend
Yale University, where he will study biomedical engineering, with a
concentration in biomechanics. Andrew plans to intern for several doctors
this the summer before he heads to New Haven, Conn., for college.

Of his many accomplishments over the past four years, he considers his
biggest to be the 17-page thesis he penned on the paradigm shift of
masculinity in early 20th-Century United States.

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