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EPISD Student Spotlight: Miguel Angel Armendariz, Jefferson High

Miguel Angel Armendariz

(JEFFERSON HIGH SCHOOL -- Jan. 12, 2021) — Jefferson High senior Miguel Angel Armendariz balances school work, football and a myriad of jobs – and does them well now and during both pre-pandemic times. Working at his late mom’s salon gave the offensive lineman a chance to learn the skill and help out the family business. Although the shop is now closed, he keeps scissors handy to give trims to family. Humble and hardworking, his football coach continues to be amazed by his work ethic both in and out of school. Community Engagement interviewed Miguel Angel, who hopes to join the marines or become a firefighter, for the next edition of the EPISD Student Spotlight.

MIGUEL ANGEL ARMENDARIZ: How do you balance school, sports and a job successfully – especially during the pandemic? 

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT: Finding balance is important. I have to prioritize and organize my time to make sure that I meet all of the deadlines, whether it is at school, on the field or at my job.   

MAA: Where do you work and what do you do?  

CE: I am very fortunate to have several jobs despite the pandemic. I cut hair, I do landscape and construction work, including laying cement and rock walls and I also sell power tools online.  

MAA: What are your honors and achievements in high school? 

CE: I was an All-District Offensive Lineman in 2018 and was drafted for the Greater El Paso Football Showcase Game.

MAA: How are you staying motivated and involved in school during the pandemic? 

CE: I am staying motivated because of sports.  Even though everything has changed this year, we have had the opportunity to play and it has been great to have that normalcy.  

MAA: What are you doing to make the most of your senior year despite the pandemic?  

CE: We have had to do everything virtually, staying connected through social media, and again having the opportunity to see my teammates has been great.  

MAA: How have athletics changed during the pandemic and why do you feel it's important to keep playing? 

CE: Well, everything has changed, but especially the workouts have been really hard to do.  We don’t have adequate equipment at home and I think that has affected us greatly.  Also, having to do the COVID check-in before practice, and not having access to our locker room.  But despite all of that, I am grateful I had the opportunity to play my senior year.   

MAA: What advice can you give to succeeding with remote learning? 

CE: It has been challenging for me, I think prefer in-classroom instruction but staying organized is important.  Also, being in contact with my teachers and counselor has been helpful.  

MAA: What advice would you give incoming freshman? 

CE: I would tell them to pay attention in class, stay focused and join sports or clubs because it makes such a huge difference in your high school experience.   

MAA: What is the first thing you plan to do when the pandemic is over? 

CE: I would like to travel once the pandemic is over.   

Interview by Reneé de Santos