Valedictorians and Salutatorians lead the way for the Class of 2011

June 10, 2011

Graduation ceremonies have begun, and we are pleased to feature our high school valedictorians and salutatorians for this year.

DVDs of Northside's graduation ceremonies are available for purchase online. Each DVD is a professionally-produced DVD of the complete graduation ceremony. DVDs costs $18 plus a $1.75 handling fee per transaction.

In addition, each graduation ceremony will be streamed live on the Intranet at www.nisd.net 30 minutes prior to the ceremony.

Brandeis High School

Valedictorian- Paige Petersen
Salutatorian- Alexandra Convertino

Paige Petersen, this year's valedictorian at Brandeis High School, plans to attend Texas A&M University in College Station majoring in chemical engineering. The daughter of Mark and Teresa Petersen, she is the recipient of the President's Endowed Scholarship, Opportunity Award, Brandeis PTSA scholarship, TSPE scholarship, Pacesetter award, among others. While at school, she was the president of the Band Council, Woodwind captain, Clarinet section leader, and National Honor Society secretary

"Thanks to all that I've encountered through my journey so far, and for building me up to who I have become and where I see myself in the future," she said. "I would ultimately like to join the military and go to medical school and specialize in infectious diseases."

Alexandra Convertino is the Brandeis High School salutatorian. This fall, she plans to attend Northeastern University in Boston majoring in psychology. The daughter of Col. S. Michael Convertino and Kimberly Convertino, she is the recipient of a Dean's scholarship to Northeastern, and a Presidential scholarship to Union, among others. While in school, she was the facilitator of San Antonio YRUU at First UU Church, Tri-dean for YRUU Rally-WACS two years, co-founder of Book Club and Key Club at Loyola College Prep in Shreveport.

 "The best lesson I've learned in high school is how to be confident in my decisions," she said. "There's a world of difference between ‘I wish' and ‘I'm going to make this happen.' I want to thank my friends and family who got me there."

The commencement ceremonies for Brandeis High School will be held Saturday, June 4 at 4 p.m. at the Alamodome.
 
Business Careers High School

Valedictorian- Brooke G. Chatterton

Salutatorian- Jessica Nicole Salazar

Brooke G. Chatterton, this year's valedictorian at Business Careers High School, plans to attend Southwestern University in Georgetown, majoring in economics. The daughter of Todd and Cheryl Chatterton, she is the recipient of Top 10 Percent scholarship, Lackland Officers' Spouses' scholarship, Honors Graduate Award, Distinction Bonus Award, Wells Fargo Dependants scholarship, Business Professionals of America scholarship, among others. While in school, she was the treasurer of Mu Alpha Theta, secretary of the Spanish Honor Society, and president of the Business Professionals of America.

"I would like to thank my mom and dad," she said. "They inspired me to work hard everyday."

Jessica Nicole Salazar is the Business Careers High School salutatorian. This fall, she plans to attend Ohio State University majoring in engineering physics. The daughter of Juanita C. Salazar, she is the recipient of the English Honor Society scholarship, Entrepreneurial Connection scholarship, Morril scholarship, Prominence scholarship, USAA Mentor scholarship, among others. While in school, she was Student Council President, and Mu Alpha Theta President.

 "I would like to thank everyone who helped me achieve my goals," she said. "The faculty at BCHS guided me through the high school experience and provided me with the tools to succeed. My friends supported me and made high school the best years of my life."

 "My mom, however, made everything happen for me and always told me I could do it. The next chapter in my life is about to open, and I am more than ready for it," she added.

The commencement ceremonies for Business Careers High School will be held Saturday, June 4 at 7:30 p.m. at the Alamodome.

Clark High School

Valedictorian- Peter Rozanski
Salutatorian- Shayna Madeline Ratner

Peter Rozanski, this year's valedictorian at Clark High School, plans to attend Texas A&M University in College Station majoring in civil engineering. The son of Thomas and Kathy Rozanski, he is the recipient of the Fiesta TX Fox 29 Scholar Athlete of the Year scholarship, Valero Alamo Bowl scholarship, State Farm Scholar Athlete scholarship, Military Officers Association of America scholarship, among others. While in school, he was captain of the Clark football team, senior leader in Young Life, and Sunday School teacher at University United Methodist Church.

 "It has been a blessing to be a part of the Clark community," he said. "I want to thank my teachers, administrators, coaches, and especially my family for everything. I couldn't have done it without you."

Shayna Madeline Ratner is the Clark High School salutatorian. This fall, she plans to attend Cornell University in Ithaca, NY majoring in human biology, health and sociology. The daughter of Varda and Adam Ratner, she is the recipient of the Tulane Presidential scholarship, John Frederick Oberlin scholarship, among others. While in school, she served as drum major, drill instructor, president of Math UIL team, treasurer and secretary of the youth group, and other leadership positions.

 "After college, I plan to go to Medical School to become a doctor," she said. "I would like to thank all of my family and friends who I could not have done any of this without."

The commencement ceremonies for Clark High School will be held Monday, June 6 at 7:30 p.m. at the Alamodome.

Communications Arts High School

Valedictorian- Nathan Storck
Salutatorian- Erica Skerrett

Nathan Storck, this year's valedictorian at Communications Arts High School, plans to attend The University of North Texas at Denton majoring in economics and English. The son of Bob and Connie Storck, he is the recipient of the University of North Texas Meritorious scholarship, St. Edward's University scholarship, Holy Cross scholarship, Alamo Bowl scholarship, Priest Holmes Foundation scholarship, among others. While at school, he served as junior and senior class president, vice president and historian of the orchestra, freshman class vice president, and freshman representative to the Environment Club.

Erica Skerrett is the Communications Arts High School salutatorian. This fall, she plans to attend Rice University majoring in bio-engineering. The daughter of Eric and Catherine Skerrett, she is the recipient of the CAHS Parent Support Group scholarship, San Antonio Puerto Rican Heritage Society scholarship, Rice University scholarship, among others. While in school, she served as class treasurer and orchestra treasurer.

The commencement ceremonies for Communications Arts High School will be held Wednesday, June 8 at 4 p.m. at the Alamodome.

Health Careers High School

Valedictorian- Ellen Zhang
Salutatorian- Diana Mao

Ellen Zhang, this year's valedictorian at Health Careers High School, plans to attend Boston College majoring in management and leadership. She is the daughter of Xin Wang and Yialang Zhang. While in school, she was a National Merit Finalist, and served as vice president and historian for the Class of 2011, president of the National Honor Society, and vice president and historian of the Latin Club.

 "I would like to thank my parents and friends for their encouragement and support," she said.

Diana Mao is the Health Careers High School salutatorian. This fall, she plans to attend Duke University in Durham, N.C. majoring in biology. The daughter of Ji Yuan Mao and Jue Wang, she is a recipient of the Roger Q. Mills scholarship, among others. While in school, she served as corresponding secretary for the National Honor Society, HOSA parliamentarian, and Latin Club category leader.

The commencement ceremonies for Health Careers High School will be held Thursday, June 2 at 7:30 p.m. at Paul Taylor Field House.

Holmes High School

Valedictorian- Zhetique Nicole Gunn
Salutatorian- Evelyn Carol Baron

Zhetique Nicole Gunn, this year's valedictorian at Holmes High School, plans to attend the University of Houston majoring in engineering. She is the daughter of Dena L. Booker. While in school, she was active in both basketball and track and field.

 "My experiences at Holmes High School have been life-changing," she said. "I hope to further my education in college and accomplish all of the goals I have set for myself."

Evelyn Carol Baron is Holmes High School salutatorian. This fall, she plans to attend the University of Incarnate Word majoring in rehabilitative science (physical therapy). The daughter of Cyril and Sueli da Silva Baron, she is the recipient of the Holmes & Business Careers High School faculty scholarship, SSFCU scholarship, UIW Dean's scholarship, among others. While in school, she was the vice president of the National Honor Society, and vice president of the French Club.

 "My training as a Husky has prepared me to face college and life," she said. "I know it will be a long and difficult mission, but I will take the challenge and conquer my goals."

The commencement ceremonies for Holmes High School will be held Saturday, June 4 at 7:30 p.m. at the Alamodome.

Jay High School

Valedictorian- Angelica Casas
Salutatorian- Emilio Mendoza

Angelica Casas, this year's valedictorian at Jay High School, plans to attend Our Lady of the Lake University majoring in journalism. The daughter of Celsa Yolanda Casas, she is the recipient of a full scholarship from OLLU, and Knights of Columbus scholarship. While in school, she was the editor-in-chief of the school newspaper and yearbook, and was voted "Mostly Likely to Succeed among the Class of 2011."

Emilio Mendoza is the Jay High School salutatorian. This fall, he plans to attend Texas A&M University in Kingsville. He is the son of Diana Mendoza. 

The commencement ceremonies for Jay High School will be held Monday, June 6 at 4 p.m. at the Alamodome.

Jay Science and Engineering Academy

Valedictorian- Aman J. Agrawala
Salutatorian- Alyssa Marie Bennett

Aman J. Agrawala, this year's valedictorian at Jay Science and Engineering Academy, plans to attend The University of California at Berkley majoring in chemistry. The son of Jahid Agrawala and Siddika Agrawala, he is the recipient of the Berkley scholarship and Sam Walton scholarship, among others. While in school, he involved with both the Science Fair and History Fair.

Alyssa Marie Bennett is the Jay Science and Engineering Academy salutatorian. This fall, she plans to attend Texas A&M University in College Station majoring in ocean engineering. The daughter of Raymond H. Bennett and Rebecca R. Bennett, she is the recipient of the Century Scholar Award, Rowan Companies scholarship, CPS Bright Lights scholarship, Opportunities scholarship, Sons of Italy scholarship, San Antonio Police Officers scholarship, among others. While in school, she was president of the Model United Nations Club, and a American Junior Academy of Science Fellow.

The commencement ceremonies for Jay Science and Engineering Academy will be held Monday, June 6 at 4 p.m. at the Alamodome.

Marshall High School

Valedictorian- Olivia Marie Frank
Salutatorian - Ashley Andrée Ugarte
Salutatorian- Joi Renee Abarintos

Olivia Marie Frank, this year's valedictorian at Marshall High School, plans to attend Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C. majoring in business management. The daughter of David and Robyn Frank, she is the recipient of the Chancellor's scholarship, Priest Holmes Foundation scholarship, San Antonio Northwest Lion's Club scholarship, National Honor Society scholarship, Mu Alpha Theta scholarship, among others. While in school, she was vice president of the National Honor Society, treasurer of Mu Alpha Theta, treasurer of the Class of 2011, and a co-organizer of the Taste of Leon Valley.

Ashley Andrée Ugarte is the second salutatorian for Marshall High School this year. This fall, she plans to attend Rice University in Houston majoring in biology. The daughter of Andrew and Gloria Ugarte, she is the recipient of the Dr. Lisa Marie Meffert Memorial scholarship, San Antonio Northwest Lions Club scholarship, National Honor Society scholarship, Rice University Grant scholarship, among others.. While in school, she was president of the National Honor Society, vice president of Mu Alpha Theta, and administrative assistant and section leader of the choir.

Joi Renee Abarintos is one of two Marshall High School salutatorians this year. The daughter of Giovanni and Eleanor Abarintos, she plans to attend Loyola University in Chicago majoring in chemistry. She is the recipient of several scholarships including the AFROTC scholarship, Loyola scholarship, Lackland Officers' Spouses' Club scholarship, Randolph Officers' Spouses' Club scholarship, National Honor Society scholarship, Mu Alpha Theta scholarship, among others. While in school, she was president and vice president of Mu Alpha Theta, and team captain of the Girls Varsity Soccer team.

The commencement ceremonies for Marshall High School will be held Sunday, June 5 at 7:30 p.m. at the Alamodome.

O'Connor High School

Valedictorian- Jaaron Blake Botello
Salutatorian- Michael Dong

Jaaron Blake Botello, this year's valedictorian at O'Connor High School, plans to attend Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Mass. majoring in chemical/biological engineering. The son of Joel and Deborah Botello, he is the recipient the MIT McDermott scholarship, Texas A&M University President's Endowed Scholarship, among others. While in school, he was head drum major of the Panther Marching Band, president of Mu Alpha Theta, treasurer of the National Honor Society, captain of the JETS and Science Bowl Team, and a Sunday School teacher.

Michael Dong is the O'Connor High School salutatorian. He plans to attend Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y. in the fall majoring in computer science. He is the son of Feng Dong and Susan Qiu. While in school, he served as captain of the Math Team, secretary and treasurer of the Latin Club, and vice president of Mu Alpha Theta.

The commencement ceremonies for O'Connor High School will be held Tuesday, June 7 at 7:30 p.m. at the Alamodome.

Stevens High School

Valedictorian - Kayla Miller
Salutatorian - Alan Alvarado

Kayla Miller, this year's valedictorian at Stevens High School, plans to attend the University of Texas at San Antonio majoring in biology. The daughter of John Miller and Michelle Miller, she is the recipient of the Rising Roadrunner scholarship, among others. While at school, she served as a choir officer, and staff writer for the school newspaper.

"I'm thankful for all the wonderful people that I met at Stevens High School," she said. "The administrators were supportive, my teachers were brilliant, and my classmates were amazing."

Alan Alvarado is the Stevens High School salutatorian. He plans to attend Westpoint Military Academy in the fall majoring in history. He is the son of Christopher Alvarado and Alma Alvarado. While at school, he participated in both choir and football for four years, was a member of the National Honor Society, and competed as a boxer.

The commencement ceremonies for Stevens High School will be held Tuesday, June 7 at 4 p.m. at the Alamodome.

Taft High School

Valedictorian- Rachelle Marian Mai
Salutatorian- Naomi Carrillo

Rachelle Marian Mai, this year's valedictorian at Taft High School, plans to attend The University of Texas at San Antonio majoring in pre-biology (pre-med). The daughter of Joyce and Lieu Mai, she is the recipient of the Roadrunner scholarship, Presidential Honors scholarship, Highest Ranking High School Graduates scholarship, among others. While in school, she served as representative of the Student Council, Limestone County Chamber of Commerce, and youth leader.

 "Even though I've only been at Taft for a year, I'd like to thank everyone who has helped me reach my goals," she said. "I especially thank my family, friends, and teachers for supporting me. Walking across the stage as Valedictorian will be the best moment of my life. I hope that I will make everyone proud in the future."

Naomi Carillo is the Taft High School salutatorian. This fall, she plans to attend The University of California at Irvine majoring in music education. The daughter of Maria Guadalupe and Abel Carrillo, she is the recipient of the Baylor University President's scholarship, University of California at Riverside's Chancellor's scholarship, among others. While in school, she was secretary of Delta Alliance Corps, historian of the Taft Raider Band, historian of the National Honor Society, and vice president of Sociedad Honoraria Hispanica.

The commencement ceremonies for Taft High School will be held Wednesday, June 8 at 4 p.m. at the Alamodome.

Warren High School

Valedictorian- Shanasia Sylman
Salutatorian- Stacy Jack

Shanasia Sylman, this year's valedictorian at Warren High School, plans to attend Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge majoring in material science and engineering. The daughter of Stacey and George Sylman, she is the recipient of the Warren Faculty scholarship, McDermott scholarship, among others. While in school, she was president of the National Honor Society, president of Future Physicians, and a lieutenant officer for the Silver Pride Pep Squad.

Stacy Jack is the Warren High School salutatorian. This fall, she plans to attend Texas A & M University at College Station majoring in biomedical sciences. The daughter of Douglas R and Janie Jack, she is the recipient of the Warren Faculty scholarship, AT&T Foundation scholarship, Baylor President's Gold scholarship, Trinity Trustees scholarship, UT Dallas Academic Distinction scholarship, Incarnate Word Presidential scholarship, among others. While in school, she participated in the varsity soccer team, National Honor Society, and Mu Alpha Theta.

 "Without the support of my family and friends, I wouldn't be where I am," she said. "I've worked so hard, and I'm only excited for what's to come."

The commencement ceremonies for Warren High School will be held Sunday, June 5 at 4 p.m. at the Alamodome.