The SAUSD celebrates five nominees for prestigious Congressional U.S. military academies

March 2, 2018 – The Santa Ana Unified School District is celebrating a precedent in the District where five current and former students have been nominated to the prestigious Congressional U.S. Academies. “This speaks to the caliber of students that we have in this District. This prestigious nomination ultimately affirms the student’s impressive achievements, such as remarkable leadership abilities, scholastic aptitude, and extracurricular talents,” said Valerie Amezcua, President of the Santa Ana Unified School District.

The students were nominated by Congressman Lou Correa to the U.S. Naval Academy and U.S. Merchant Marine Academy. The nominees are

  • Grant P. Cuevas of Valley High School, nominated to the U.S. Naval Academy;
  • Adolfo Magarin of Godinez Fundamental High School, nominated to the U.S. Naval Academy;
  • Zoe Velez of Segerstrom High School, nominated to the U.S. Naval Academy;
  • Seth R. Chavez, a 2017 graduate of Segerstrom High School, nominated to the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy,
  • and Natali H. Pacheco, graduate of Santa Ana High School, nominated to the U.S. Naval Academy.

The institutions prepare college-age Americans to be officers of the U.S. uniformed services. Upon graduation, service academy graduates are commissioned as offers in the active or reserve components of the military or merchant marine for a minimum of five years.




During the February 27, 2018, Santa Ana Unified School District Board of Education meeting, the Board recognized the nominees for their acceptance and proudly representing the District. “We’ve put in a lot of work to get here, and we would not have been able to get here if it had not been for our families and the support of the District,” said Zoe Velez after receiving a certificate of recognition on behalf of the Board.

After distributing certificates to each nominee, Board President Amezcua encouraged them to go out and make their mark in the world but to return to Santa Ana to serve in their community.

Each Member of Congress may have five cadets at each of the service academies at any one time. In order to attend one of the United States Service Academies, a candidate needs a nomination.

Founded in 1888, the Santa Ana Unified School District is the 7th largest school district in California, and the largest school district in Orange County. The district educates approximately 50,000 students at 57 schools throughout the city of Santa Ana. Approximately 60% of district students are English learners with Spanish being the most common language, and approximately 91% of the student population is eligible for free and reduced-price meals.



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