Student of the Week: Joanna Gonzalez (Pt. 1)
I am Joanna L. Gonzalez. I am 17 years old, the youngest of four children, and I will also be the first in my family to go to college. As you may be aware, here in the valley, we are not expected to graduate high school, and even less so expected to go to college. I am currently ranked top 20% of my class at San Benito High School. They have given me countless opportunities such as enrolling in Advanced Placement, Dual Enrollment courses and this prestigious scholarship.
I am currently participating in many clubs including Upward Bound Math & Science, STEMS, Lower Valley Cotillion, and the Varsity Softball Program. Apart from academic and athletic participation, I like to volunteer during my free time at the HEB Feast of Sharing and church festivals. No matter my busy schedule, I have been taking part in softball leagues, community and school activities since I was seven years old. It is challenging to balance my academic, athletic and home activities; however, I strive to maintain a healthy balance so I can be the role model my family looks up to.
Even though my parents didn’t further their education, they encourage me to achieve my post-secondary education. During the last three summers, my parents have worked hard to take me to softball tournaments, showcases, as well as college camps so I can display my skills. Unfortunately, this was the last summer my parents were able to do this together due to the unexpected loss of my biggest supporter/fan. My senior year is going to be challenging because my dad will not get to see his dreams come true. He made sure I didn’t stray from the path of my academic and athletic capabilities. No matter the path that is ahead of me I will fulfill our dreams of being able to continue.