Stallion of the Year Award Races Ahead

“I hope the plethora of relationships between students and staff that I’ve helped to create as President, Editor-in-Chief, volunteer, tutor, advocate, and peer will inspire subsequent generations of students to foster that same positive and inclusive school climate,” said Gattis.

Every school year five seniors are nominated to be Stallion of the Year based on their volunteer work, grades, leadership positions, sports involvement, and positive attitude. The nominees for this year are Ryan Marin, Siena Chacon, Garret Gattis, Austin Zielenbach, and Isabella Zuniga.

These candidates will be interviewed by the Principal, Head Academic Advisor, Activities Director, Assistant Principal, and Teacher of the Year, Jamie Gonzalez. The official Stallion of the Year will be announced on Senior Awards Night on May 20th.

Ryan Marin:

An academically gifted student, Marin has excelled in school for the past four years and taken many AP Classes. Marin is involved in many clubs and organizations at SJHHS and volunteer work outside of SJHHS.

I don’t care much about being ‘famous’ in any capacity as someone from SJHHS, but I do like that people can look toward me when they feel like it’s impossible for someone to follow the path less traveled.”

— Marin

“I have really strong grades, and have taken 17 AP courses at SJHHS which is unusual. Also, I am the president/captain of a lot of academic-centered organizations on campus such as test prep club, NHS, and Academic Decathlon. I also spent two years heavily engaged with the music program at SJHHS, being in wind ensemble, marching band, and pit orchestra. I don’t know how much they are aware of what I do outside of school, but I spend a lot of time volunteering in education over the summer as well,” said Marin.

When Marin graduates, he hopes that he can serve as an inspiration for those students looking to break boundaries in academics.

“I don’t care much about being ‘famous’ in any capacity as someone from SJHHS, but I do like that people can look toward me when they feel like it’s impossible for someone to follow the path less traveled and do what many guidance counselors advise against in terms of academic rigor and difficulty,” said Marin.

Garret Gattis:

Heavy involvement in school-run electives and extracurriculars like Yearbook, CSF, NHS, Link Crew, and BRIDGES was a big reason for Gattis’ nomination. However, for Gattis these programs have also helped him develop into the person he is today.

“I really found my place through the BRIDGES program, California Scholarship Federation, and the SJHHS Yearbook Program — I feel my involvement in all three of these outstanding programs is what ultimately shaped me into the confident leader and successful student that I am today,” said Gattis.

Gattis wants his legacy to be a positive one that will impact the future of the SJHHS climate into a more inclusive environment.

“I hope the plethora of relationships between students and staff that I’ve helped to create as President, Editor-in-Chief, volunteer, tutor, advocate, and peer will inspire subsequent generations of students to foster that same positive and inclusive school climate,” said Gattis.

Siena Chacon:

From club president to ASB class president, Chacon has made a massive impact at SJHHS through her many leadership positions. However, Chacon also recognizes the impact that SJHHS has had on her.

SJHHS has given me invaluable lessons and taught me invaluable skills that I will carry into my life after high school.”

— Chacon

SJHHS has given me invaluable lessons and taught me invaluable skills that I will carry into my life after high school, I am beyond thankful for everything I have learned from my teachers and peers,” said Chacon.

After high school, Chacon wishes to be a role model for students who want to achieve more.

“I want my legacy to be a true reflection of each student at SJHHS, meaning I would like to be proof that if you’re committed and persistent, you can achieve something larger than yourself that can benefit the environment that surrounds yourself and peers,” said Chacon.

Austin Zielenbach:

It felt super gratifying to be nominated, it felt great to be recognized for all my hard work. I try really hard to be kind to everyone, especially my teachers and it felt nice that people have noticed,” said Zielenbach.

While Zielenbach is thankful towards SJHHS, SJHHS should also be thankful for her. Besides grades and a good attitude, Zielenbach has been a huge contributor in the drama department for the last four years.

At SJHHS, Zielenbach learned more than academics. She feels SJHHS shaped her into the person she is today.

“SJHHS has been the place where I really grew up and grew into myself. I have learned how to be a mature adult and I feel prepared to enter the world. Both the campus and teacher culture contributed to this,” said Zielenbach.

Isabella Zuniga:

“I think my participation in AVID, Dual Immersion, Cross Country, NHS, CSF, Help the Homeless club, the Voter Registration Initiative, the Walk for Wellness, and my overall participation and enthusiasm helped me to be nominated,” said Zuniga.

Zuniga is one of the few students on campus that manage and excel heavily in school electives, sports, clubs, volunteer work, grades, and at the same time maintain a positive attitude on campus.

“SJHHS has impacted me by offering me so many opportunities to grow as a leader and student,” said Zuniga.

With all of Zuniga’s past initiatives, it’s no wonder why Zuniga was nominated as one of the select-few to be Stallion of the Year.