2017 has been a very busy yet productive year for Generation 1st Degree-Pico Rivera. We kicked off the new year with a visit to Washington D.C. where one of our very own G1DPR and El Rancho High School students, Bethania Perez, was inaugurated into former First Lady Michelle Obama’s Better Make Room Student Advisory Council.
In April, we hosted our largest event yet, A Day in Space! This community event engaged local students and families, age 0-100, to participate in a fun, inspiring, interactive and educational event to learn about the importance of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) and its application to careers in aerospace.
Emcee Kim Baldonado, a news reporter for NBC4 Southern California, lead the morning plenary discussion between NASA Astronauts José Hernández and Mark Kelly, Diana Trujillo, Mars Curiosity Mission Lead-NASA JPL and Will Pomerantz, Vice-President Special Projects, Virgin Galactic on their personal journeys to their careers in space. Following the plenary, attendees had the opportunity to participate in intimate break out sessions, including: Women in Space, Careers in Aerospace, and a Q&A with an Astronaut. Rounding out the event was an Interactive Space Fair filled with STEM-inspired exhibits from NASA AMES, NASA JPL, Los Angeles Universal Preschool, Northrup Grumman, Play-Well TEKnologies and several University and Cal State engineering representatives.
In May 2017, more than 200 ERHS senior students took the College Signing Day Pledge to continue to reach higher, as part of Mrs. Michelle Obama’s Better Make Room initiative. During the event, I challenged the current Class of 2018 to double the number of college-bound graduates. I know you can do it!
We hosted our annual Summer College Sendoff Luncheon in June for college freshman and their parents to meet and learn from former ERHS students who are in college. Guest speakers, Justin Uribe and John Barrios, put the college experience into perspective. It was amazing to have two of our very own El Rancho students share their first-hand college reality.
And, of course, these last few months have been focused on preparing our incoming Class of 2018 for college by sending them on college campus tours, college applications and scholarship workshops, and so many other programs to ensure that their pathway to college is clear and bright.
As we close out 2017, I want to share my sincere thanks to our staff, the staff at El Rancho High School, and all of our community partners, individuals and families who continue to support Generation 1st Degree-Pico Rivera. It takes a strong-willed community like Pico Rivera to make change, and together we are increasing the number of college degrees in our community. Cheers to continued success in 2018!!!