Continuation high school students often face significant challenges in their quest to graduate. But former Frontier High School student Kathy Orozco has been able to weather many unlikely twists and turns in her life to successfully take on the challenge, and is now attending an elite four-year university. Orozco graduated from Frontier High School, Whittier Union’s continuation school, in 2013. She began her first year at USC Marshall School of Business this January after making a tough decision to switch her career trajectory, a choice she made after channeling guidance she received at Frontier: “Something that you love is easier to learn.”
California High School culinary students have been waiting all year long to use their newly renovated classroom kitchen facility to whip up new recipes, cook up sweet and savory delights and learn what it takes to be a professional chef. The 103 students in the school’s Culinary Arts Academy have broken in the $1.2 million industrial facility, which includes new appliances, baking and cooking equipment, cabinetry and more.
University of California, Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks visited California High School on Feb. 5 to observe its widely acclaimed Puente Program, which has been recognized as one of the highest-performing Puente sites in the state based on the numbers of students who applied to four-year colleges and the number who were accepted.
Santa Fe and Pioneer high schools honored their best and brightest students during their Top 100 ceremonies, celebrating a tradition of student achievement at Whittier Union. Santa Fe held its annual Top 100 Recognition and Awards dinner on Feb. 5 in the Michael Mendez Gymnasium, while Pioneer High celebrated its inaugural “Titans Top Tier” Awards Ceremony on Feb. 12. Students were selected by their overall weighted grade point averages.
The Whittier Union High School District is one of four school districts across the state selected to participate in a three-year case study administered by one of the world’s leading educational researchers and reform advocates who will observe the District’s successful use of collaboration to improve student achievement.
Stephan Kudlacek, 2008 graduate of La Serna High School, is part of the research team that successfully invented a way to “unboil” a hen egg, a breakthrough that could dramatically reduce costs for cancer treatments, food production and other segments of the global biotechnology industry, according to the team. Kudlacek, who has inadvertently become the face of the project, credits the astute guidance he received at La Serna for his achievements.
La Serna High School’s College and Career Center has never been busier. Since the expansion of the center’s hours and arrival of a full-time college advisement specialist, a constant stream of students have been filing in during and after school to ask questions, find support and get assistance.