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Home | Tag Archives: franklin high

Tag Archives: franklin high

Franklin, Coronado students deliver holiday blessings to Travis

Santa and his Franklin and Coronado elves brought a sleigh full of toys and goodies for children at Travis this week.

The student councils of the rival West Side high schools joined efforts for their annual Holiday Blessings Drive, collecting a box full of gifts for each student at Travis. The elves told the students they could shake or hold the gifts but made them promise not to open their six or seven presents until Christmas morning.

“I’ve never gotten a lot of presents,” said fifth grader Arielle Camargo. “I feel happy.”

Students and faculty and staff at Coronado and Franklin and their feeder campuses got lists of needs and wants from students. Pajamas, socks, clothes and other necessities were wrapped up for them along with toys to give them a whole package of Christmas presents.

“We have a lot of parents who are struggling financially and this is such an uplifting thing for our students,” principal Armando Llanos said.

The Blessings Drive has become a tradition for the two campuses. They join together to help pass out the gifts and carry the boxes for the younger children and talk about some of the goodies inside the box.

“I absolutely love doing this every year. It’s my most favorite part of the job in Student Council,” said Eleanor Schoenbrun, Franklin StuCo secretary. “I love that we are able to unite and bring our two Student Councils together because that means we can make a bigger impact on our community and we can help form the next generation of change makers.”

The Student Councils also united to wrap gifts over the weekend and organize the boxes.

“I think it’s one of our most important projects,” said Nicholas Gonzalez, Franklin StuCo secretary. “We are able to really affect these kids’ Christmas. It’s great to see them light up when they see all the boxes and their toys and gifts.”

The Franklin and Coronado kids left Travis with a lasting impression and lots of smiles.

“I’ve seen smiles on students who don’t normally smile,” Llanos said.  “We really appreciate everything Franklin and Coronado did for our school – especially bringing the their students to help.”

Fifth grader Cesar Lopez couldn’t help but smile as he rummaged through his box: “I’m so happy. We’re very thankful.”

Story by Reneé de Santos  |   Photos by Leonel Monroy – EPISD

Video+Gallery+Story: Franklin, Coronado High Join Forces for ‘Holiday Blessings Drive’

 Coronado and Franklin high schools students set aside their competitive spirit on Friday, December 7 as they got together to collect toys, clothing, shoes and gifts for students at Douglass Elementary.

Student council members from both schools started the Holiday Blessings Drive five years ago at Zavala Elementary, picking a different school each year to visit.

The high schoolers welcomed each grade level into the school’s choir room, where Santa Claus and stacks of boxes awaited each student.

Before each student received their gifts they were made to take an oath and promise not to open — or even try and get a peek — of their gifts until Christmas morning.

Student Council students pick an elementary at the beginning of the school year, meeting with the principal and counselor to coordinate the project.

The elementary in turn is responsible for providing students’ clothing and shoe sizes, as well as what the students have asked for on their holiday wish list.

Story & Photos by Leonel Monroy |  Video by Raymond Jackson/EPISD

Recent SpEd Grads Get Job Training for Life After High School

Recent Franklin High graduate Sean Marusich welcomes everyone entering the front of the Hospitals at Providence Memorial Campus with a wide smile that is proof of his eagerness to make guests and patients feel welcomed.

“I love working with my colleagues and friends,” Marusich said. “I’m a greeter. I’m doing a great job.”

Marusich and 11 other recent EPISD graduates are part of Project Search, a 10-month program for students who have completed their academic requirement according to their Individual Education Plan but still have eligibility for school services under special education.

“Project Search is a completer program that provides work experience before they go into the workplace,” said EPISD special education teacher Richard Harrid, who coordinates Project Search and works on-site. “This program is beneficial for our students because we target specific work skills as well as soft skills. We provide them with practice and feedback on how they can improve and walk them through the steps of acquiring these skills all the way up until they go to their interviews and seek employment.”

The students are interning throughout the hospital in a variety of settings including the gift shop, central supply, food services, accounting and the front desk.

“The interns that we have this year are working to their maximum potential,” Harrid said. “They’re trying their absolute best and they are well received by the Hospitals of Providence. I look forward to great things from them.”

EPISD uses the Project Search national curriculum, which is then aligned with the career preparation TEKs. The interns practice work skills and receive instruction in the morning before heading to their departments for hands-on learning.

“The interns receive evaluation feedback from myself as well as from their department supervisors and we use that information to target interventions to help them become work ready at the end of the program,” Harrid said. “Then in conjunction with their vocational rehabilitation counselors, Texas Workforce Solutions and myself, we work with the interns and try to help them find meaningful employment in different locations including here at the Hospitals of Providence.”

Celina Azar, director of volunteer services and PBX for the Hospitals of Providence, works closely with the interns and Harrid. It’s the second year of the program at HOP and several of last year’s interns have found regular employment at the hospital.

“We are so grateful to have these interns throughout our campus,” Azar said. “We get to prepare them with job skills for their future and in turn get rewarded with their amazing personalities.  The interns’ classroom is in our volunteer office and it is wonderful to see them develop throughout the year. It is a humbling experience.”

Azar often accompanies Marusich in the front area of the hospital, greeting guests and providing information. She finds Marusich’s role a perfect fit for his personality.

“He’s the sunshine. He comes in and just makes everybody smile,” Azar said. “Many individuals entering the hospital come in with high anxiety.  Sean makes them feel comfortable and lowers their anxiety with his kindness.”

Coronado graduate Andrea Guaderrama spent most of her morning transporting patients with a supervisor. She maneuvered a wheelchair to different areas of the hospital, picking up and dropping off patients waiting to go to radiology.

Her favorite part of the job: “I get to travel the entire hospital and see different places. I’ve learned everything like how to unplug machines and beds.”

Inside the gift shop, you’ll find Stephen Vasquez. The recent Coronado graduate stood by the cash register unpacking cases of Brownie Brittle before shelving them.

“I restock the Cokes and price the merchandise,” he said.

Much like his fellow interns, Vasquez smiled and responded similarly when asked how he felt about working at the hospital: “I like it.”

Story by Reneé de Santos | Photos by Leonel Monroy – EPISD

Letters for Parkland: Franklin Student Collecting Notes to Send to Students

Just two weeks after 15 students and two educators were tragically killed in a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, students in the El Paso Independent School District are doing everything they can to help survivors cope.

One of those students is Franklin High School Junior Abigail Cazier, who has spearheaded a letter writing campaign among other EPISD students in order to show support and hopefully bring solace to the students and families in Parkland.

“It’s important to reach out because they are just like us. They are our peers, and it could have just as easily happened here,” Cazier said. “They are going through something awful that no one should have to go through.”

Cazier said the letters may seem insignificant, but she hopes they have a powerful impact among those students who lived through the unthinkable tragedy.

“I think just letting them know we stand with them, and that we are here to support them even though we live far away is important,” she said.

With the help of her friends Maura Moreno and Priscilla Miguel, she has already collected more than 30 letters from her school. She hopes to collect many more in the coming weeks.

“I was originally just going to ask my English teacher if we could write letters, but I thought ‘why stop there? There’s so many students,’” she said. “We can offer so much if we did it as District and send thousands of notes of support and comfort.”

Cazier is encouraging students from all EPISD schools to take ten minutes of their day to write a heartfelt letter and then turn it into their front office. The letters could be sent to Franklin High School from any EPISD school using school mail.

“Just write from the heart,” she said. “I would offer words of comfort and words to let them know they are not alone.”

Letters will be collected until a week after spring break and then sent to a teacher in Florida who has been collecting hand-written notes from throughout the country.

“We are trying to get as many letters as possible to send from El Paso with love from our community,” she said. “As students, we need a chance to get involved. We need to let our voices be heard. We need to make a change.”

Story by Alicia Chumley  |  Photos by Leonel Monroy / EPISD

Two El Paso ISD Seniors Named National Merit Semifinalists

Two El Paso Independent School District high-school seniors earlier this week were included in the elite list of National Merit Scholar semifinalists for 2018.

Coronado High School’s Daven Cheu and Franklin High School’s Mauricio Gonzalez were among the five El Paso County students who made the list published by the National Merit Scholar Corp.

Both Gonzalez and Cheu have big plans for college and were mostly surprised by the honor.

“It’s going to be a great opportunity to help me to go to the college I want to go to,” said Cheu, an IB student considering a major in environmental systems at the University of California at San Diego. “I didn’t quite expect to be here. I have to get the paperwork sorted out and then find out what happens next.”

Gonzalez knows being a semifinalist will look good on his resume when he applies to Yale University, his top choice for now.

“It’s a pretty big honor,” he said. “I know there are a lot of students who compete and to be one of three from EPISD is pretty big. I’m just happy to represent El Paso and EPISD. I hope I move on further and win a scholarship.”

The corporation also named former Chapin High School student Connor Jarolimek as a semifinalist. Jarolimek was a student at Chapin when he took the qualifying PSAT test, but has since moved out of state.

National Merit will notify students advancing to finalists.

Franklin High School’s Mauricio Gonzalez
Coronado High School’s Daven Cheu
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