|Pictured are the 2012-2013 Student of the Year winners, from left to right; Front row: Jerynne Rae Noble, Heritage High School; Coakley Rathbun, Paloma Valley High School; Ashley Acosta, California Military Institute; Danielle Lemus, Perris Lake High School; and Alejandro Contreras, Perris High School. Back row: Sally Myers, Founder; Mayor Pro Tem Mark Yarbrough, City of Perris; Dr. Jonathan Greenberg, Superintendent, Perris Union High School District; Dorothy Wolons, President/CEO, Menifee Valley Chamber of Commerce; Councilman Tom Fuhrman, City of Menifee; and Grant Bennett, President, Perris Valley Chamber of Commerce.|
Each month, the Menifee Valley and Perris Valley Chambers of Commerce recognize local high school seniors for their exemplary display of excellence both as a student and as an example to others. On May 21 at the Lake Elsinore Diamond Club, the Chambers honored five Students of the Year for the entire 2012-2013 school year.
To receive the Student of the Year title and the $1,720 scholarship that goes with it, students competed in a rigorous scholarship application process that included two essay questions. The scholarships were generously donated by local businesses and community organizations.
Paloma Valley High School: Coakley Rathbun
Coakley Rathbun was not only named Paloma Valley High School’s Student of the Month back in April 2013, but he also earned the Student of the Year title. At the ceremony, he thanked his family and friends for their support and went on to say he hopes to leave behind a lasting message that “It’s okay to be smart and cool.”
Helping other teammates with their schoolwork, and knowing that he had a small role in their educational development, made him feel valued. Coakley will attend the University of Arizona in the Fall to obtain his masters in computer science.
Heritage High School: Jerynne Rae Noble
Jerynne Rae Noble earned the Student of the Month title in January 2013. Jerynne shared how honored she felt to be chosen from so many for such a high recognition, and she hopes that in her time at Heritage she has been a good role model to others. Principal Julie Zierold stated that Jerynne truly exemplifies Heritage’s legacy in leading by example in everything she does.
Jerynne plans to continue her education at the University of California Santa Barbara to major in bioengineering.
California Military Institute: Ashley Acosta
According to Principal/Commandant Richard Wallis, Ashley is very goal oriented so when she sets her mind to something, he gets out of her way. Ashley shared that being in command of the second largest unit in California has been difficult, but she has learned that it’s not only about her and says, “In the end, you hope you’re making a difference.”
Ashley will be attending California State University San Marcos, where she will double major in registered nursing and engineering.
Perris Lake High School: Danielle Lemus
As Perris Lake High School’s Student of the Year, Danielle Lemus shared that she was very proud of the fact that she will be the first person in her family to not only graduate from high school but also to attend college. Perris Lake High School Principal Dr. Narciso Iglesias spoke of Danielle’s determination. Everyone can see her heart and passion and how she strives to help others along her way.
Danielle will be attending Everest College to major in criminal justice.
Perris High School: Alejandro Contreras
Alejandro Contreras learned that hard work and effort will bring results, as is evident by the fact that he was awarded Student of the Year on his campus. He hopes to carry these attributes with him as he enters into college. Alejandro is also the first in his family to attend college so he hopes to inspire others to work for their goals.
Alejandro will be attending the University of California Los Angeles to major in math with a minor in either economics or physics.
Congratulations to all of the students honored in 2012-2013 whether students of the month, or students of the year. If you are interested in learning more about the Student of the Month Program, please contact Sally A. Myers, Founder at 951-506-8024.