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BHS Student Will Lead and Learn in D.C.

By Breeanna Jent
Staff Writer
2013-07-06 at 10:29:08
Learning the importance of their roles as engaged citizens, meeting with key leaders, participating in study visits at historic national sites and understanding how they can affect positive change in their communities are only some of the things that students participating in the Ready to Lead program in the nation’s capital, Washington D.C., will get to do next month. Incoming Bloomington High School (BHS) student Cameren Ceniceros will be one of those 40 students participating from around the country, including the Miami, New York, Phoenix, Los Angeles, San Diego, Central California, Chicago and Dallas areas to “represent the diverse range of students from all over the nation,” said Cameren. The five day-long leadership training program is part of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute’s (CHCI) High School Latino Leaders in D.C. (HSLLDC) and is designed to bring 9th, 10th and 11th grade students from throughout the country to Washington D.C. to learn how the federal government works and learning how they can bring about important change to their communities and the country as a whole, according to the program’s official website. “This program is dedicated to teaching young adults about how the federal government works, the importance in being civically engaged, and creating positive changes in our communities,” Cameren said, highlighting these points as reasons why he feels the program is beneficial. “The moment I received the call from Aaron Almada, who is one of the senior specialists for the program, I was beyond astounded to hear that I was being accepted to such a prestigious and exclusive program. I was proud to tell my parents that I would be going on an all-expense-paid trip to Washington D.C not only to view the amazing sights there but to learn how to be morally good and to affect a positive change in my community,” he said. A member of the Bloomington High School Navy Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (NJROTC) and currently serving as a lieutenant commander in the program, Ceniceros has always seen the importance of leadership through education, his father, Colton Joint Unified School District (CJUSD) Board Member Randall Ceniceros shared. “Cameren at an early age showed interest in the military. He was exposed to the military as a baby while his mother was an Army Reserve Sergeant. He has excelled in his studies and has received consecutive honor roll since the first grade. He has been awarded several academic medals and recently a trophy,” said Randall. Additionally, Cameren was also chosen by the American Legion Boys State (Bloomington Post) to represent Bloomington High School in Sacramento from June 22 through June 26. He looks to begin a career in the military after he graduates from high school, with hopes to be accepted into the West Point Military Academy or into the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) program in either the University of California or California State University systems, with experiences like the one on which he is about to embark helping him in his endeavors, he noted. “This program can further aid [me on] my path to a better education. Not only that, but with the experience and knowledge that I will gain during the week that I am there, I hope that I can return to my community and to my school and pass on what I have learn to my fellow students and community in hopes that other teenage Latinos can truly make a difference in the communities that they live in.” With the support of former CHSI Chair and former California State Congressman Joe Baca, who recommended him into the program, Cameren will embark on his five-day-long journey on July 14, ending July 19. The program is made possible at no cost to the student participants, as the program is sponsored by State Farm Insurance and Southwest Airlines, the official airline sponsor of the 2013 Leadership Development Programs. The program is also held in partnership with the Close Up Foundation.

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