The following is a press release from Lake Elsinore Unified School District:
Seven high school seniors from the Lake Elsinore Unified School District were recently honored by the Student of the Month program, under the auspices of the Lake Elsinore Valley Chamber of Commerce and BMW Management, which owns and manages Sizzler restaurants. Students are individually selected by teachers and school staff for their character, love of learning, leadership, community service, and their ability to persevere through life’s challenges.
February ‘Student of the Month’ Honorees:
Elsinore High School
Cyrus Smith is a valedictorian candidate with a focus on studying Computer Science to fulfill his goal of a career in computer programming. He has applied to several UC universities. He thrives on AP courses such as physics, Spanish and calculus. Other interests include leadership in USAF JROTC Color Guard. To be successful, according to Cyrus, is to set personal goals and to be self-reliant in meeting them.
Ashley Hernandez is a valedictorian candidate with a passion for mathematics and singing. She plans to attend either USD or UCSD, ultimately to earn a PhD so she can teach college math. School life includes singing in musical productions, though she is also active in Interact, NHS, CSF, and AVID. Ashley says mathematics—especially calculus—is like a “best friend,” because of the sense of accomplishment it has given her. A high point in sharing her musical talents with others is serving as church cantor.
Lakeside High School
Jacob Kaiser is described by teachers as a Renaissance man, because of his talents and interests from academics to sports. Once he completes his mission assignment following graduation, Jacob plans to attend BYU Idaho to study Engineering. Career interests include architectural design and structural engineering. An Eagle Scout at age 14, Jacob thrives on leadership opportunities, from the basketball court to youth leadership at his church. His commitment to giving back to his community and work ethic are highly commendable, with over 3,000 community service hours logged in.
Elysha Smith enjoys volleyball, AVID, and Women’s Basketball (Sunbelt League champions), plus academics. She has selected Spelman College in Atlanta, GA, because of its historical significance among African-American colleges, where she will study Mathematics. Well on her way to becoming the second college graduate in her family, Elysha is known by teachers and her peers both for her tenacity and strong belief in helping others. Elysha has been a dedicated volunteer for the annual School Games, co-sponsored by Special Olympics of Southern California, and LEUSD.
Temescal Canyon High School
Martin Valencia plans to attend Fullerton or Cal State San Marcos as a Kinesiology major, and ultimately wants to pursue a career in physical therapy. School life includes studying sign language (ASL) for three years, and track & field. The advice he shares with other students is to always give 110%, because attaining goals is mostly about determination. Teachers admire Martin’s eagerness to be an instrument for a greater good in school, a sign of his commitment to leading a purpose-driven life.
Bailey Chatwin has applied to Pepperdine, her first choice in colleges, among other notable schools where she has already been accepted. A scholar athlete, Bailey is accomplished in tennis, track, and dance. Campus life includes NHS, CSF, Interact, and Cheer. She is described by faculty members as a natural born leader. She has been a cheer captain for two years and coaches a cheer club for Thunder Football. Her philosophy of life is to focus on giving 100%, never saying, “I can’t.”
Keith McCarthy Academy
Kyle Ledbetter is described by the staff at KMA as a “quiet leader.” He plans on attending MSJC, to study either Bio-marine or Engineering. Not one to be held back because of life’s challenges, KMA has enabled Kyle to push ahead in the belief that attending school is a privilege not to be taken for granted. Wanting to give back to other students, Kyle’s leadership at PLUS program peer counseling forums has made him a favorite facilitator among students at OHS and EHS. Kyle is a shining example of perseverance and the drive to succeed.