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Wednesday , June 20 2018
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Tag Archives: el paso high

Retired Regional Businessman Bridges Communities with Endowed Scholarship

Retired Las Cruces businessman and engineer, Orlando Cervantes, recently gifted the New Mexico State University Foundation $50,000 to create the Orlando Cervantes Endowed Scholarship.

The scholarship is special in that it specifically bridges the El Paso and Las Cruces communities by awarding graduates of El Paso High School with scholarship dollars to complete a degree in engineering from NMSU.

Cervantes proudly explained his idea behind the scholarship, “I’m an Aggie,” he said. “And, I’m a Tiger.”

A native El Pasoan and graduate of El Paso High School, Cervantes’ life is a culmination of opportunity, perseverance and hard work. In high school, he served as captain of the EPHS football, basketball and baseball teams, lettered in both football and baseball and was inducted into the EPHS Hall of Fame.

He earned a football scholarship to play at NMSU and after his freshman year, Cervantes voluntarily joined the military. He was stationed in Korea for two years where he honed his passion for engineering by working on building and engineering projects for the army.

Following his service, Cervantes returned to El Paso, completing his degree in engineering from NMSU in 1960.

Opportunity immediately came knocking, and after a one-year appointment with Robert McKee General Contractors in El Paso, Cervantes moved to the West Coast where he was able to build his engineering portfolio alongside some of the area’s top engineers.

Nine years later, Cervantes returned to Las Cruces to his wife’s family farm where he would face new career challenges, “I didn’t have a lot of experience in farming,” he said, “So I started looking for things to do.”

Using knowledge and skills from his background in engineering, Cervantes worked with companies in Louisiana to introduce a new Tabasco crop ¬- and processing method – to Mesilla Valley. His initial talks were met with speculation about the probability of success in the desert. “They thought I was nuts,” Cervantes said. “Especially because it was a new crop and process foreign to the area.”

His perseverance and unique innovation in crop production and chile processing – along with a little luck, “I just happened to pick the right crop,” he added – resulted in the growth of the farm from 10 acres to several thousand, which now produces millions of pounds of mash distributed worldwide.

Notwithstanding the farm’s success, Cervantes maintained a second career as a plan-review engineer. He has served on the boards of a variety of civic and community organizations and has played instrumental roles in numerous projects across southern New Mexico, including the development of the Planning and Inspection Departments for Doña Ana County and the city of Sunland Park, the creation of the performance zoning ordinance for Doña Ana County and the construction planning and design of NMSU’s Zuhl Library.

Cervantes hopes his scholarship opens doors for new generations of fellow Tigers and Aggies. He wants them to understand that it will take a lot of hard work to achieve their goals. “Each student will have a different situation and story when they come to study at NMSU,” Cervantes said. “To be successful, however, you have to be the first one in the morning to open the office and the last person to close the office at night. You have to remember that a degree is not a pass to success. You have to make the effort.”

Looking back, Cervantes admits that of all his accomplishments, he is most proud of his three children, Joseph, Dino and Tina – who now run the family farm – and his six granddaughters. With regard to his career, Cervantes remains humble about his successes. “You can find examples of achievements much greater than mine,” he said. “But, I’m happy with what I’ve done.”

Author:  Daphne Griffin – NMSU

Video+Story: Albertsons Celebrates Store Renovations with Checks for EPISD Schools

Albertsons celebrated the re-grand opening of its Kern Place store in grand fashion Wednesday morning giving $9,000 back to El Paso High, Wiggs Middle and Mesita Elementary – their neighborhood stores and community partners.

The El Paso High cheer squad and drumline and Wiggs Middle cheerleaders kept the event festive as the store introduced its new look and contributed $2,000 for each campus, as well as $3,000 for the El Paso High band and $2,000 for the cheerleading squad.

Albertsons gave nearly $70,000 back to the El Paso community during Wednesday’s event.

“We believe partnering with our local schools is important for many reasons,” said Lori Raya, president of the Southwest Division for the Albertsons Companies. “One, the students are our current shoppers, our future shoppers and maybe future employees. We believe if we can donate back to our local schools, we are also donating back to students’ education and really helping people aspire to reach their dreams. If help we can do that, and help make better for one student at a time, that’s what we want to do as a company.”

El Paso High principal Mark Paz welcomed the partnership, acknowledging that the store is an easy trip from the campus for students and staff to shop, buy supplies and pick up sushi and Starbucks.

“We’ve had a fantastic partnership with Albertsons for many years,” Paz said. “We appreciate Albertson’s reaching out to us to be part of their re-grand opening event. We were able to bring our band, our cheerleaders and some key student representatives to receive this generous award from Albertsons.”

Wiggs principal Tim Luther joined with Paz and Mesita assistant principal Marcela Duran to accept their checks during a brief ceremony outside the store. The three joined with their students to pose with their oversized checks before they cut the ribbon.

“It’s another amazing event that Albertsons put on for our community,” Luther said. “They have been generous to us in the past and they continue to work with us and our El Paso High feeder pattern. We can’t say thank you enough for everything they’ve done for our community.”

The contribution to the three campuses also included two pallets of school supplies.

“We feel like every student should have everything they need to go to school and study and be successful and have all of the necessities and utensils to participate to be able to do their homework and turn in that paper that they are very proud to turn in,” Raya said.

In December, the Albertsons Foundation contributed $44,000 back to EPISD campuses and organizations during the re-grand opening celebrations at the Redd Road and Kenworthy stores.

Story by Reneé De Santos  |  Photos by Leonel Monroy  |  Video by Angel Dominguez/EPISD

Video+Story: El Paso High JROTC Cadets Headed to D.C. for Army Ten-Miler

Two El Paso High School JROTC cadets will lace-up their running shoes this Sunday for the 33rd annual Army-Ten Miler in Washington D.C. — a first for El Paso ISD.

After being part of the first EPISD team to compete in the Bataan Memorial Death March, seniors Mikel Adame and Angel Ramirez will now be the first to compete in the ten-miler, running alongside 35,000 other runners.

“We are really proud, since we will be representing our school and EPISD,” Adame said.

“Normally, when people think of El Paso High, they think about the building and say ‘that’s a beautiful structure,’ but the JROTC program was one of the first in El Paso. We want to bring more recognition to the program.”

The cadets are attending the race thanks to sponsorship from the Association of the United States Army (AUSA).

“I am a member of the AUSA, so I contacted them and asked if they would be interested in sponsoring us,” said Ret. Sgt. Maj. Velton Locklear, EPISD’s JROTC assistant. “They have been very helpful.”

Locklear, who led the Bataan team back in March, encouraged the cadets to participate in the ten-miler. He will also participate in the run.

“They did really well, and I knew they would be up for this challenged,” Locklear said. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for them to go to Washington D.C. and have this experience.”

The cadets have been training for weeks to prepare for the run, participating in the German American Oktoberfest Night Run and other local runs, as well as running on their own time.

“This past Sunday we ran ten miles with the sergeant major, and we did pretty well,” Ramirez said. “We ran at Fort Bliss where the Special Forces do their rucksack marches and finished in 1 hour and 20 minutes.”

The race will start and end at the Pentagon, charting a course past national monuments, important landmarks and scenery.

This will be Ramirez’ first visit to the Washington D.C., and he is excited to see the sights.

“I am looking forward to seeing the White House and the other monuments,” he said. “We are cadet officers, so it’s great to set the example for the other cadets and for them to see the things that can happen when you put in the work.”

AP Capstone Program Headed to El Paso High

Students at El Paso High will have one more tool at their disposal to be successful in college thanks to the addition of an innovative program that could help them focus on independent research, collaborative teamwork and communication skills.

La High next year will begin implementing the two-year AP Capstone program by offering the AP Seminar class for college-bound students. A second class, AP Research, will be added during the 2018-19 school year.

The creation of the AP Capstone program at El Paso High further emphasizes college readiness and preparedness. El Paso High will be the only high school in El Paso and one of only about 60 high schools in Texas to offer the competitive AP Capstone program.

“This shows the community that we are definitely innovative and that we are constantly looking ways to improve the opportunities for our students,” said Cyd Goldfarb, El Paso High college readiness coordinator.

AP Capstone is designed to complement and enhance the in-depth, discipline-specific study provided through other AP courses. The AP Capstone curriculum fosters inquiry, research, collaboration, and writing skills through the intensive investigation of topics from multiple perspectives.

Initially, El Paso High will offer the AP Seminar, which will strengthen students’ writing skills in preparation for college-level academic writing.

“It will give them a sense of rigor,” Goldfarb said. “They will hopefully be at a level that they understand what it takes to be an academic writer.”

Students typically take AP Seminar in the 10th or 11th grade, followed by AP Research, which will be offered beginning in fall 2018.

Students who earn scores of 3 or higher in AP Seminar and AP Research and on four additional AP Exams of their choosing will receive the AP Capstone Diploma. This signifies their outstanding academic achievement and attainment of college-level academic and research skills.

Students can research a topic of their choosing, but Goldfarb said the hope is that some will consider topics that emphasize the dual language component to complement El Paso High’s magnet program.

“We want our students to feel supported and we want to push them but not overwhelm them,” Goldfarb said. “This is our way gently pushing them in a place they can achieve.”

Among the qualifications for becoming part of the AP Capstone program, campuses must show strong support of AP courses and testing. Currently, El Paso High has about 500 students taking 1,000 AP tests this spring.

“Research has shown that if a student takes one AP test – regardless if they pass or fail – is much more likely to graduate from college,” Goldfarb said. “That’s one of the reason we push our students. It’s about the experience – not the end result. Having to sit for three-hour test, having to feel nervous, a little bit of anxiety is really important because that’s what they will be experiencing when they’re in college. We don’t want first time experience to be in college. We want them to experience it here with our support and their friends feeling the exact same way. We are giving them opportunity to see that college really is in their future.”

Football game, Mass Reunion cap El Paso High 100th birthday

Current and former students of El Paso High School will have a full day of Centennial Celebrations on Saturday, Oct. 8, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the opening of the Lady on the Hill.

The celebrations on Saturday cap three days filled with activities aimed at bringing EPHS students and alumni together to observe this important milestone. The activities on Saturday include an attempt to have the largest high-school reunion ever.

Andress Eagles vs EL Paso Tigers
Andress Eagles vs EL Paso Tigers

“It is a wonderful time to be an El Paso High Tiger. It’s so exciting to see so many of our former students come back and have them celebrate with us,” said Principal Kristine Ferret.

“We want to make sure that all Tigers feel welcomed on Saturday as we show off just how special our school is to the El Paso community.”

More than 3,000 alumni are expected to attend the 85th Battle of the Claw between the EPHS Tigers and the Austin High Panthers at historic R.R. Jones Stadium.

The game kicks off at 11 a.m., but tickets for the game will go on sale starting at 9 a.m.

At 12:30 p.m., the EPHS Alumni Orchestra will give a concert in the EPHS Auditorium. After the end of the game, at around 2:45 p.m., registered alumni will gather on the field to attempt to establish the Official Guinness World Record for the largest school-reunion.

All activities will take place at the Trost-designed El Paso High School, 800 E. Schuster.

Story in Many Pics: HS Football Week 5 – Andress v El Paso | Canutillo v Del Valle

Again our very own Andres Acosta was moving through the Borderland, documenting the region’s interesting match ups for week 5 of the high school football season. Check out all the action from Canutillo at Del Valle, as well as Andress at El Paso.

canutillo Eagles at Del Valle Conquistadores in a district 2-5A showdown at Conquest Stadium
canutillo Eagles at Del Valle Conquistadores in a district 2-5A showdown at Conquest Stadium
Canutillo Eagles at Del Valle Conquistadores in a district 2-5A showdown at Conquest Stadium
Canutillo Eagles at Del Valle Conquistadores in a district 2-5A showdown at Conquest Stadium
Andress Eagles vs EL Paso Tigers
Andress Eagles vs EL Paso Tigers

Two El Paso ISD teachers named Educators of Distinction

EPISD teachers Amy Stell from Coronado High and Russell Lang from El Paso High were nominated to receive the Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction award from the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS).

The NSHSS boasts members in more than 160 countries and is dedicated to recognizing academic excellence among high-achieving scholars and educators. To qualify for the award, student members must nominate an educator they feel is deserving of the distinction.

Coronado sophomore Sydney Reiter felt her teacher and cheer coach Amy Stell more than met the criteria.

“She is such an important role model, not only in her students’ lives but also her cheerleaders’ lives,” Reiter said. “She is always compassionate and always there if you need her. She’s just a great person to talk to.”

Stell is honored by the nomination, acknowledging there is more to an educator’s job than meets the eye.

“It’s amazing. It’s always very endearing to receive thanks, whether it’s in a note or something like this,” Stell said. “There’s more to teaching than just teaching my topic. It’s teaching life lessons.”

She is proud to be able to teach in two different capacities and make an impact in her students’ lives.

“One of my former cheerleaders is now coaching at Austin,” Stell said. “She shared a message on Facebook thanking me for being her coach and having those lessons carry through into what she is doing today. It’s a great feeling to see that. She posted it for everyone to see.”

El Paso High Centennial Celebration Continues Thursday Night

The centennial celebration continues at El Paso High with the fourth installment of the EPHS Alumni Legacy Series — 100 Years of Excellence in the Arts, highlighting the artistic contributions of alumni over the years.

“The celebration of the arts is another perfect example of the 100 years of excellence that the Lady on the Hill stands for,” alumni president Michael Montes said. “We have so many fabulous artists that call EPHS their alma mater, such as painter Tom Lea, actress Lupe Ontiveros, as well as humanitarian and folklorico dancer Rosa Guerrero to name a few.”

The event will feature an interactive multimedia production, and an art exhibit and sale with original works by El Paso High alumni. The event is Sept. 8 and begins with a reception at 6:15 p.m. in the school’s main hall. All proceeds from the art sale will benefit the EPHA Alumni Centennial Fund, which supports centennial projects.

Local celebrity and El Paso High alumna Felipa Solis will be the featured speaker of the evening.

The legacy series, created and directed by former El Paso High theater director Liz Gaidry and Class of 1962 alumna Lee Schwartz, integrates photos, a video footage, and interviews of alumni and friends to celebrate and share memories of El Paso High.

“The goal of ‘100 Years of Excellence in the Arts’ is the same as with all other Legacy Series: to honor the birthday of the building, as well as the people who attended school there,” Schwartz said. “The building, itself, is a work of art.”

Schwartz and Montes, along with many other generations of students that have walked the marble halls, feel the same about their alma mater.

“It’s fitting for such a special place of unique and exceptional architecture, the building is like a piece of art itself,” Montes said. “I strongly believe that plays a significant role in nurturing the minds of all the exceptional artists that have called EPHS home.”

The yearlong celebration will also include a 100th birthday celebration on Sept. 18 and an attempt to break the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest high school reunion on Oct. 8.

Herald-Post Games of the Week: Bel Air v Eastwood | Mayfield v Del Valle | El Paso High v Hanks

Why settle for only one high school football game of the week? Check out the action our very own Andres Acosta captured at two of the most hard-hitting games in the Borderland Friday night.

Eastwood battled their YISD rival Bel Air, with the Troop taking the win 50 to 20; while Mayfield survived a rally from Del Valle 23 to 21.

Meanwhile over at Excalibur Stadium, photog Joe Najera caught the El Paso High Tigers beating the Hanks Knights 48 to 31.

Week 2: Bel Air at Eastwood
Week 2: Bel Air at Eastwood
Week 2: Mayfield at Del Valle
Week 2: Mayfield at Del Valle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

El Paso High Cub Camp Encourages Camaraderie and Teamwork

Teamwork is not something you learn in a book — it is learned through experience, collaboration and the overcoming of obstacles.

For the nearly 140 incoming freshmen at this year’s El Paso High Cub Camp the word “obstacle” took on a very literal meaning.

Students scaled walls, bridged pools of water and even crawled through tunnels at the Fort Bliss Leadership Reaction Course as part of the two-day camp, which welcomes incoming freshmen to the Lady on Hill.

Assistant Principal Roseanna Lindley organized the camp as a way for students to get familiar with the school before classes start on Aug. 22

The first day of the camp students took a crash course on what being a Tiger is all about. They participated in a cheer rally, learning the school fight song and later breaking into different groups to create their own team chants.

“They start out quiet because they are not used to a pep rally on this scale, but at the end they are all cheering and really feeling that Tiger spirit,” Lindley said.

news2_2496_mThe Cub Camp incorporated engaging activities throughout the campus so students learn the campus while they are having fun. Activities included television show-inspired games like Wheel of Fortune, Survivor and an Amazing Race scavenger hunt.

“Over the course of the two days they get to feel what it’s like to be a high school student and be on campus. You have to break down some barriers,” said Cyd Goldfarb, El Paso High’s college readiness coordinator.. “That way on the first day of class they don’t feel completely lost.”

The second day of the camp, students learned some valuable lessons through real-life obstacles at water leadership course. The students worked together to brainstorm creative ways to perform specific tasks, like crossing a body of water with a crate of ammo or breaching a wall with limited resources and manpower.

For freshman David Ochoa it was tough battling his fear of heights when it came time to cross a narrow plank, but cheered on by his fellow classmates he made it across with no problem. Everyone cheered when the last of the group made it over the pool of water with less than a minute left.

“It was exciting,” Ochoa said. “I was scared at first, but it was a good experience and great feeling knowing that I accomplished that.”

El Paso High senior and volunteer Ana Moreno was impressed.

“I don’t think we completed this obstacle my freshman year,” Moreno said. “It was awesome seeing them work together as a team and how they communicated to complete the task.”

New friendships and bonds are forged by the end of the leadership course, but no one escapes the water.

“It is kind of like an initiation into El Paso High,” Lindley said. “Everyone goes through the water and comes out a Tiger.”

El Paso High Among the ‘Most Picturesque’ schools in U.S.

A website specializing in landscapes has listed El Paso High School as one of the 14 most picture-worthy campuses in the United States — another honor for the Henry Trost-designed landmark that is turning 100 years old this year.

LawnStarter, an Austin-based landscaping startup, this week released its list of the Top 14 Picturesque High School Campuses in the United States. The list was compiled using a combination of grand architecture and splendid scenery.

El Paso High School is ranked No. 10 and it is the only Texas school that made the list.

“El Paso High is a special school and it is no surprise that people outside of our community have taken notice,” said Principal Kristine Ferret. “There is so much history in this building. But most importantly, there is also quality teaching and learning going on inside of it.”

Photo: wikipedia
Photo: wikipedia

Opened in 1916, the campus was designed by famed southwest architect Henry Trost using Greco Roman inspiration. El Paso High overlooks the city and its majestic columns overlook Jones Stadium, one of the most unique football fields in the country.

The writers of the list noted that Trost’s architecture “commands your attention” and made special mention of supposed ghosts that haunt “La High.”

This special commendation by LawnStarter comes as the school gets ready to celebrate its centennial. Administrators, students and alumni have planned parties, lectures, tours and other special events in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the opening of El Paso High School.

El Paso High celebrates 100 Years of Excellence starting Thursday

El Paso High is launching its Centennial celebration with a legacy series on “100 years of Excellence, History Architecture and Trost.”

The first of five Legacy Series begins Thursday night at 7:00 pm, admission is free and the event is open to the public at El Paso High School’s Auditorium (800 E. Schuster Ave.)

The El Paso High School Legacy Series, part of the Centennial Celebration, is organized by the El Paso High School Alumni Association, El Paso High, and the Independent School District.

Other events to celebrate the school’s 100th birthday will follow throughout the year. The Centennial Homecoming Celebration will take place on October 6-8th with more than 3,300 alumni, former faculty and staff joining together to attempt to break the Guinness Book of World records for the largest high school reunion.  The celebration will conclude with a float in the 2016 Sun Bowl parade.

El Paso High School, also known as The Lady on the Hill, is rich with history and excellence and its centennial is a perfect opportunity to showcase our legacy.  We invite the community to join us for these enriching and educational sessions.

Students, faculty, and parents have been collaborating and preparing for a wonderful Centennial Year of Celebrations.  For more information, visit the Centennial Web page at www.ephscentennial.com

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