Written by Staff
By Jess Paniszczyn
The Irving Elks’ Lodge rolled out the welcome mat for some very special guests on March 20. Every high school student named as Student of the Month during the past year was invited to dinner along with their family members, high school counselors and principals. The evening’s festivities recognized the outstanding achievements of some of the area’s brightest young minds and culminated in the announcement of the coveted Teenager of the Year Award.
“To even be considered for Teenager of the Year, students must have an extremely high SAT or ACT score,” said David Jordan, the Elks’ Youth Activities Chairman. “They also have to be active in school as members of several different groups, hold office positions, receive honors and all these things add up in a points system. They also have to be involved in extracurricular activities and hold offices in various programs.
“We give two scholarships for the Teenager of the Year away a year, one to a young man and one to a young lady. It is a four year scholarship for $1,000 a year,” Jordan said.
In the top 10 percent of his class, Adrian Burciaga of Irving High School plans to use his vocational grant to learn about diesel technology.
“I am planning to attend UTI to become an automotive diesel technician,” Burciaga said. “I am going to use this money to help me finish school, so I can be the first person in my family to get some kind of education and give the best I can to the world.
“I found out about this yesterday after school, and I was shocked. Once I came here, I felt so out of place. But I want people to know that a guy who may not be going to college or may not be very smart can win something. Because that is who I am right now, I’m not smart. I do good in school, and all that hard work paid off, because I won something.”