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THURSDAY, JUNE 1 3, 20 1 3





eniors from Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified School District’s three high schools will receive their diplomas this week and move on to the next challenge. Two graduates, in particular, from the district had the will to overcome difficult circumstances and strive for success. One moved to the United States when he was 13 years old and barely able to speak English. Another moved with her family back and forth from Mexico, where they struggled to make ends meet. Both will now graduate with honors and plan to go to college. BAO MINH NGUYEN Bao Minh Nguyen, 19, still remembers the day he and his mother landed at Los Angeles International Airport from Vietnam. “I remember hearing the song ‘Hotel California’ by the Eagles in the car leaving the airport,” Nguyen said. “Since then, that is my favorite song.” He barely knew the language or the culture. “I remember everything was just so grand,” said Nguyen of Anaheim. “I felt like everything moved so fast.” Now, six years later, Nguyen lives in Anaheim and will graduate from Valencia High School as the school’s Tiger of the Year, an award given to the best overall student chosen by the faculty. He took 13 Advanced Placement courses, S E E D I P LO M A ● PA G E 3


Yahaira Quevedo, 1 7, of El Camino Real High will attend San Diego Miramar College and San Diego City College on a $3,000 scholarship.

Bao Minh Nguyen, 1 9, of Valencia High School moved to the U.S. with his family six years ago. Now, he is graduating with honors and plans to attend Cal State Fullerton in the fall. KEVIN LARA, ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER

Rotary Club president leaves her mark in town

Class of 20 1 3, we’ve got you covered BY FERMIN LEAL ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER

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It’s high school graduation season – and the Placentia News-Times has extensive coverage beginning today. We’ve compiled lists of graduates from many of the city’s high schools. We have bios on many of the top graduates, including their achievements and college plans. Schools also provided some scholarship amounts and examples of colleges and universities that students from the Class of 2013 will attend in the fall. Besides what we have this week, our graduation coverage will continue in the June 20 edition, which will include many photos from graduation ceremonies.


Michelle Cummings has just over two weeks left as president of the Rotary Club of Placentia, but that doesn’t mean she’s going anywhere. Cummings has held several positions within the club, and will serve as past president on the club’s board after her term ends June 30. Presidents serve for one year after spending the previous year as president-elect to raise funds for projects during their upcoming term. During Cummings’ year in office, the club helped fund a water well in South Sudan, sponsored an Easter egg hunt and awarded $10,000 in scholarships to students from all three of Placentia’s high schools.

“The perk of the job is getting to lead an organization you believe in,” Cummings said. “The Rotary Club has enhanced my life.” She first walked into a meeting 13 years ago. She was encouraged to go to meet new people and create business contacts. “I wondered, ‘What Cummings could this group of business professionals be doing weekly at 7 a.m. every Wednesday morning?’ ” Cummings said. Although she resides in Fullerton, her Placentia ties run deep. She works as a branch manager at the Credit Union of Southern Califor-


The perk of the job is getting to lead an organization you believe in. The Rotary Club has enhanced my life.” MICHELLE CUMMINGS R O TA RY C L U B PRESIDENT

nia in the city, is a former member of the Placentia Round Table Women’s Club and has served on the board of the Placentia Chamber of Commerce. “I am a better person for being a Rotarian, and I am proud and honored to be among the best volunteers in our community,” she said. “I came for business and stayed to change the world.”

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