SOLEDAD — Top scholars at Soledad High School were recently honored at a virtual ceremony presented by the Soledad Rotary Club and the Soledad Unified School District.
Top academic achievers from each grade level were celebrated and highlighted in front of their peers and families.
“On March 13, that was the last day of the third quarter and that was the last day of regular school,” said Superintendent Tim Vanoli. “Since then, each and every one of you has persevered, and you’ve been able to maneuver around everything that’s been in front of you educationally to be successful at the end of the school year. There is no hurdle too big in your life to overcome. We are all very, very proud of you.”
Hartnell College trustee and former Soledad school board member Erica Padilla-Chavez was one of the officials present to speak to students.
“The reason we all do what we do is because we believe in you,” Padilla-Chavez said. “We believe that you are the hope of tomorrow.”
Padilla-Chavez shared her journey through school and college as a chance to guide graduating seniors who now look toward their own futures.
“Your education after high school not only will contribute to your bottom line, it will also contribute to the community that you call home,” she said.
A slideshow went through each student, showing their photos and highlighting their achievements and future plans.
The top 10 scholars from the senior class were able to chime in, and most either congratulated their peers or gave thanks to those who supported them in their journeys.
Chanelle Argueta congratulated her peers and thanked her parents, and also said, “I also give thanks to all those teachers who supported me all those years. I just wish I could see them one last time.”
“Keep on making us proud guys,” said Javier Galvan, board president.
“I want to congratulate each and every one of you for working so hard and reaching the top 10,” said Alfredo Flores, board vice president. “Keep working hard.”
As the virtual ceremony drew toward a conclusion, Vanoli said, “I want to congratulate each and every one of the students. I know your families are very proud of you. The entire Soledad community is also very proud of you.”
He added, “I know that each and every one of the parents out there has done everything you can for your children. It shows in an event like this.”
Jeff James, SHS principal, thanked the Rotarians and staff who worked to put together the virtual event.
“I am always touched by the heartwarming gift that you all give to the students of Soledad,” James said.
Soledad High School 2020 senior top scholars were: Chanelle Argueta, Katherine Amador-Rangel, Raquel Barrera, Olivia Fale, Juana Guerrero Carrillo, Estefania Montiel, Kyla Marie Perez, Yesenia Ramirez, Isela Tamayo and Ariana Valdez Cordero.
Junior top scholars were: Jordan Camel Perez, Angelique Canchola, Gregory Carrillo, Giselle Cortina Rubio, Viviana Fausto, Crystal Garcia, Ximena Mandujano, Joaquin Franco Ona, Jessica Ornelas, Elizabeth Pantoja, Shelby Sitko, Alayna Tirado, Karla Vasquez and Karina Villarruel.
Sophomore top scholars were: Yaneli Alcantar, Hamza Bassal, Noah De La Rosa, Kilene Gonzales, Kimberly Aranzazu Jimenez, Nadia Manzano, Jean-Luc Martel, AnnaLeah Martinez, Kyanna Medina, Megan Sacyat and Sofia Vargas.
Freshmen top scholars were: Bibi Sahida Achiczy, Melanie Chavez, Kiria Diaz-Moreno, Ramon Gonzales, Aaliyah Gonzales, Ethan Hoang, Makaio Jimenez, Ayanna Lee, Oliver Majano, Joseph Oliveros, Jude Francis Ona and Emma Rains.