Student of the Month: Villanueba pursues passion for animal science, values relationships

Over the last few years Villanueba has become immersed in student life, school work and various extracurricular activities including Color Guard, Women's Ensemble and several sports.Austin Insco

Over the last few years Villanueba has become immersed in student life, school work and various extracurricular activities including Color Guard, Women’s Ensemble and several sports.

Senior applies herself to studies and extracurricular activities

Every month The Feather will highlight one student recommended by a teacher and voted upon by Feather staff members. Students are chosen depending upon several factors including and not limited to good grades, class engagement, positive attitude and special extracurricular activities.

The Student of the Month for February is senior Summer Villanueba, chosen by English and Yearbook teacher, Andrea Donaghe. Donaghe says she selected Villanueba for persistence in her school work and the quality of her character.

“Summer has an incredibly strong work ethic, completing all assignments on time and well done,” Donaghe said. “It is rare that I ask Summer to resubmit work. She has valid opinions and conveys them well in her writings and essays. As a student here at FC, Summer holds the ideals and qualities that this school strives for. Whether it is in my English class, twirling her flag for Color Guard or worshiping in Chapel, Summer is a true example of pursuing excellence.”

Villanueba joined the FC community as a 7th grader after attending Mountain View Christian throughout elementary school. Over the last few years Villanueba has become immersed in student life, school work and various extracurricular activities including Color Guard, Women’s Ensemble and several sports.

Summer says that while she is often preoccupied by these activities, there is a certain joy and contentment to be found in a life full of commitment.

“Yeah I’m busy most of the time, but I like to be busy,” Villanueba said. “I like to have things to do because I don’t always have the opportunity to spend time with the people I want to because their busy too. Instead of me sitting at home doing nothing I would rather be here doing something.”

Villanueba’s extracurriculars coincide with her own personal interests making passion for these activities natural.

Music has played a considerable role throughout Villanueba’s childhood up to her present involvement in Women’s Ensemble. As a young child Villanueba took part in baby pageants and attended special classes to enrich her musical talent. Throughout the years, programs at both Mountain View and FC have served to create an infinity toward the musical world. Although, Villanueba admits that her appreciation for the art was a slow developing process.

“At first when I was younger I didn’t much care for it {music} because it was like I had to do it for school,” Villanueba said. “But when I came to Fresno Christian where they had electives, where I got to choose what I wanted to do then it became: this is what I like to do. That’s how I first started to like music.”

“Summer has an incredibly strong work ethic, completing all assignments on time and well done. It is rare that I ask Summer to resubmit work. She has valid opinions and conveys them well in her writings and essays. As a student here at FC, Summer holds the ideals and qualities that this school strives for. Whether it is in my English class, twirling her flag for Color Guard or worshiping in Chapel, Summer is a true example of pursuing excellence.”–Andrea Donaghe¬†

In addition to Ensemble, Villanueba has taken up Color Guard as a sport of choice. Though she had, had no prior experience until junior year, Villanueba soon became a dedicated member of the team.

“Color guard has been the one sport where I feel like I don’t have to worry about people pushing me too hard or being too aggressive,” Villanueba said. “It’s just a thing that I know I can do. I’ve tried other sports, but Color Guard has just been the one that’s stuck.

Despite a loaded academic and extracurricular schedule, Villanueba, manages to make time for her interests outside of the school setting, one of which is animals.

From a young age, Villanueba was exposed to the animal kingdom through her older brother who worked at a local pet shop. Due to these interactions Villanueba developed a love for all creatures both ordinary and exotic. She currently owns a blue nosed pit bull, two tabby cats, a shih tzu and a Mexican King snake.

“I always had animals in my life and I guess I always felt I had a connection with them,” Villanueba said. “I was the type of kid that cried when Lassie died or if there was a movie where an animal got hurt I was always emotionally involved with it. It’s super important to treat animals well because sometimes their species won’t last that long otherwise.”

She hopes to take this compassion for animals to a professional level after high school, perusing an animal science degree at Fresno State University, attending Fresno Pacific University to continue animal science research and eventually becoming a surgical vet.

In order to gain experience for her future and out of a sheer fascination and compassion for the animal kingdom, Villanueba volunteers her time to organizations such as the SPCA and the Waterhouse Animal Hospital.

“For me I think it’s important to volunteer at shelters because it is something that I’m getting involved with in my career in the future,” Villanueba said. “For others it could be a way to help the community. It’s a good way to serve and get experience.”

When Villanueba has time that is not devoted to school, extracurriculars or animal care, she enjoys spending quality time with friends and with her boyfriend. In addition, she dabbles in poetry, creative writing, art and video games.

“I occasionally like to do artsy kinds of stuff,” Villanueba said. “I’ll draw pictures or I’ll write poetry. I’ll make stories up just to pass the time. Other than that I love to play video games.”

Long time friend and alumna Miriam Dewolf, ’14, says that Villanueba displays a unique ability to both maintain a calm demeanor and simultaneously remain focused on the academic sphere.

“Summer is laid-back and lazy, but at the same time dedicated and driven,” DeWolf said. “She is caring and loyal and willing to drop everything to help out with people she cares about. She’s honest. If you ask her ?does this dress make me look fat?? she’ll honestly say ‘yes it does now take it off.'”

Blog Editor Emily Ladd, ’16, considers Villanueba to have the likeness of an older sibling due to her honest and caring nature.

“Summer is kind of like a really cool older sister figure,” Ladd said. “She’s hilarious and fun to hang out with and play with. She’s also honest and always there for you.”

Villanueba values friendship as a high priority and often organizes get-togethers for the simple purpose of bonding.

“To me my friends are my family,” Villanueba said. “I have girl sleepover parties or I’ll take them to Disneyland or to Six Flags or Beach Boardwalk. All of that type of stuff, because these are the people I want to spend my life with. They’re pretty much my family.”

For more Student of the Month, read the Jan. 23, Poojan Gopal strives toward profession in mechanical engineering.

For more features, read the Feb. 18 article, New academic installment creates environment for change.

Follow The Feather via Twitter @thefeather and Instagram @thefeatheronline. This writer can be reached via Twitter: @skylerlee.

 

By |2015-02-19T00:00:00+00:00February 19th, 2015|Features, Uncategorized|0 Comments

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