Student Spotlight: Teressa Zayas, SIATech Long Beach

October 10, 2011

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By José Estrada, an instructor at SIATech Long Beach

Teressa Zayas entered SIATech High School a few months ago. In those short months, she has shown determination and leadership skills that are above average.

She is a hard-working student ready to complete courses and achieve high aspirations for her future career. As she stated during our interview, "Nobody will ever stand in the way of my goals." Her personality and her actions are those of a relentless student wanting the best for her future and her community.

Teressa is from Riverside, CA, and attended high school at a local school. After a few questions, Teressa began to tell me that the reason she left her school was because of the lifestyle that peer-pressured her to ditch and do many other bad things. She commented that in her old school not a single person cared for her future. She did not feel that teachers or staff were looking out for her or cared if she succeeded or failed. She began receiving bad grades and ended up not graduating.

After time passed, Teressa felt she needed to do something with her life. She had a conversation about Job Corps with her sister and decided to apply and take a tour of the different sites in California. She chose Long Beach because the site felt welcoming, and it was the place she envisioned to start a new life. Long Beach Job Corps was the place where a new step and a new vision would spark to help meet the goals of Teressa's new life.

Teressa commented, "I know what I want to do with my life now, and I don't want to make the same mistakes as before." She is taking a whole new step toward her goals. She has finished her Medical Office Support Trade, and she is getting ready to complete her high school diploma.

She said, "SIATech High School has been a great learning experience." She explains that the help of the teachers, the curriculum, and the classes are made to engage and create a fun learning experience for students different from the experiences at other schools.

Teressa wants to continue on the medical route and become a registered nurse. Be on the lookout for the next registered nurse of the year!

SIATech (pronounced SIGH-a-tek) is an award-winning network of charter schools focused on dropout recovery. SIATech is a WASC-accredited high school that operates in partnership with the federal Job Corps and Workforce Investment Act programs on eight campuses throughout California. The school serves 100% low-income and previously out-of-school youth. SIATech excels at identifying student strengths and individualizing instruction to meet each student's needs and goals. The school's safe and caring setting enables students to take charge of their learning and obtain the tools they need for lifetime success, whether it is at their chosen career or further education. For more information on SIATech, watch this short video or visit the SIATech website.

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