Community Involvement

Avenal prison staff awards scholarships

Four people with certificate and a check.
Lori Urbano, Adrianna Gallegos, Lawrence Mendoza, and Justin Nugent.

The Avenal State Prison Employee Action Committee awarded $500 each in scholarships to four Valley High School seniors.

Kaylin Valenciano from Avenal High School had a 4.38 GPA and graduated with an Associates of Science in Plant Science and an Associate of Liberal Arts Math and Science. Kaylin had been enrolled in college prep classes since her freshman year. She had leadership roles with ASB. She was a full time volunteer for the Responsible Athletes Program and assisted by helping setup and clean up before and after events. She coached youths and played 4 years of soccer. Kaylin will head to California State University, Fresno, in the fall.

Diana Perez also from Avenal High School, had a 4.23 GPA, and was enrolled in honors and college prep classes since her freshman year. Diana received only one “B” grade her entire high school career. While helping her mother raise her three younger siblings, Diana became the first member of her family to attend college. She plans to attend UCLA to study Political Science with the goal of becoming a Defense Attorney.

Brenna Baker, daughter of ASP Correctional Case Records Manager Chris Baker, graduated from Coalinga High School and will be heading to West Hills Community College in the fall. Brenna’s goal is to obtain an Associate of Arts degree and transfer to California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly) in San Luis Obispo to complete her undergraduate studies, then apply for the Master’s Program to complete her training and begin a career as an Elementary School Teacher.

Arianna Gallegos, daughter of prison M&SSII Michael Gallegos, graduated from Lemoore High School and will be attending West Hills Community College in the fall, with aspirations of a career in the mental health field. Adrianna had a cumulative GPA of 3.95. Arianna was a four-year California Federation Club member, participated in multiple volunteer projects at the Breast Cancer Center of the Central Valley Community Hospital in Hanford, aimed at uplifting cancer patients during chemotherapy, as well as performing volunteer work at a local elementary school.

By Lt. J. Campbell

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