1050 S. Main Payson, UT 84651 - (801) 465-6025 - (801) 465-6067 fax
By Daniela Garcia
19 Payson High School Latino in Action Students attended the annual LIA Conference at UVU on March 15, 2012. The Latinos in Action Conference gives an opportunity for all the LIA groups in the state to get together and get to know each other, listen to motivational speakers, attend workshops and watch different schools perform traditional dances. The workshops consisted of different leaders teaching perseverance in different ways to many students.
In one workshop the student groups from each school were challenge to come up with a business proposal and find a solution for it, the winning school would win 1,000 dollars for their school. This year the proposal was why is it that African Americans and Latino students in our schools in Utah score so low on the ACT. The students came up with a commercial and posters and solutions that could be done to change that.
“Don’t be afraid to ask questions because questions lead to answers and answers lead to knowledge and knowledge leads to power,” quoted motivational speaker Carlos Ojeda Jr.
There were three motivational speakers that spoke, each speaker told there story and motivated our students. The speaker that motivated our LIA students the most was Key Note speaker Jose Hernandez; he is one of two Latino Astronauts in the world. He was a migrant student, from a very young age he worked in different cities in California in different fields migrating from different areas for work. He did not have very much schooling, nor did his parents, his parents only having a third grade level of schooling pushed him to attend school and work hard. He put in his mind to work hard and be one of the first Latino astronauts, he applied at NASA eleven times. But he never gave up, doing everything he could he worked and worked to become an astronaut, at age 41 he got accepted and is now the NASA engineer, he is in charge of overseeing the equipment on the ship. His story motivated many of our students that no one can put you down and that nothing is impossible if you work hard.
“Jose Hernandez is by far the best speaker I’ve heard, he is a great example and very inspirational,” said Ivan Cardenas.
At the conference Senior James Lopez won a scholarship for 1,000 dollars to use at any school he wants. Lopez turned in an application and an essay talking about how he is a leader in our school and times when he has had to overcome something in his life.
“I want to be a roll model to all the other Latino Students by getting good grades and show that they can do anything they want in life,” said Lopez.
There is many opportunities for any student and the Latinos in action Conference shows that to all the students and teaches them many skills so they can work hard and accomplish any goal.
“LIA Payson High School welcomes bilingual students in the class room, regardless, as long as they can speak two languages and they can be an asset to the group. We welcome Jaisha Webb, not a Latino student, to the club, she supports us and we all love her very much. Anyone is invited to join, find me or Mrs. Gillie for information,” quoted Cardenas.