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Class of 2021 Graduates from Fontana Unified’s Kaiser High School Receive AVID Scholarships

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FONTANA, CA – Two Henry J. Kaiser High School Class of 2021 graduates, who were enrolled in the school’s college-prep elective Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID), have received $1,500 scholarships to ease their transition into higher education, thanks to the Riverside Inyo Mono San Bernardino (RIMS) AVID Scholarship Program.

Tim Rodriguez and Fatima Mejia are both first-generation college students. They joined Kaiser High’s AVID program as freshmen, through which they developed study skills, learned about the college application process, accessed scholarship opportunities, and immersed themselves in a college-going culture.

Rodriguez will attend Cal State San Bernardino and study computer science. Mejia, whose scholarship was sponsored by the Inland Empire Community Foundation, will attend Cal Poly Pomona.

Rodriguez has earned multiple Kaiser High academic gold medals for maintaining a 4.0 GPA, received an Advanced Placement (AP) Scholar Award for passing three or more AP exams, and has been recognized with the Fontana Unified Seal of Biliteracy Award. Rodriguez hopes to work as a software engineer or computer teacher in the future.

“What I have learned through AVID is to not be afraid to ask for help,” Rodriguez said. ‘AVID has helped me with my communication skills in asking questions that I normally would not ask, as well as pushing me to do my best in my challenging classes. It is a safe spot to collaborate with many different people on a certain goal.”

Mejia credits her parents for encouraging her to pursue higher education and enroll in AVID. Mejia is an AVID Cross Age Tutor and has received Kaiser gold medals for maintaining a 4.0 GPA every semester at Kaiser and graduated in the top 10% of her class. Mejia has also been recognized with a Fontana Unified and California Seal of Biliteracy Award.

“I owe everything to my parents. As soon as they heard there was such an obliging program as AVID, they insisted I enroll,” Mejia said. “AVID has helped me become a responsible, dedicated and organized student.”

The RIMS AVID program prepares traditionally underserved students for four-year college eligibility, providing a social and academic structure to support students as they work to succeed. Geared toward students who may be the first in their family to attend college, RIMS AVID saw 92% of its students accepted to a four-year college in 2019.

“Fatima and Timothy are inspiring examples of how hard work and dedication can put you on the path to success. They are role models and student leaders,” Kaiser High AVID Coordinator Rebecca Johnson said. “At Kaiser we truly value good character and citizenship, and we wish all of our AVID graduates the best of luck in the future. We could not accomplish this without the great work by our Kaiser AVID team.”