VICTORVILLE — A Victor Valley High School student is among a handful of high school seniors in the county to earn the prestigious Dell Scholarship this year, and he’s the first student in the school’s history to receive the award.
Jerry Ho, with a 4.5 grade point average that puts him at the top of VVHS’ class of more than 430 seniors, was recently selected as one of the recipients of the $20,000 scholarship from the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation.
Jerry has been a part of the Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) program since his freshman year at Victor Valley High, and he says entering AVID was “the best decision I’ve ever made.”
AVID is a voluntary program aimed at first-generation college students who have academic potential and may also be part of ethnic or socioeconomic groups that are traditionally underserved. AVID students get tutorials related to their coursework as well as mentoring in time management, writing skills, collaboration and more.
VVHS AVID Coordinator Shannen Avila has been Jerry’s AVID teacher for all four of his years at VVHS, and Jerry said the stability of having the same teacher as well as having a stable “cohort” of classmates have been keys to his success.
“Jerry is one of the most polite, dedicated, hard-working students I’ve ever had the opportunity to teach,” said Avila, who has been at VVHS for eight of her 15 years as an educator. “He’s a student that truly desires to learn. Rather than just earning a grade, he truly values education and the process of learning.”
Jerry plans to attend Cal Poly Pomona next school year, with the aim of becoming an electrical engineer. He said he’s interested in designing new technology for fighter jets, which is something he mentioned on his application for the Dell Scholarship. Jerry said he also received the $2,000 Oro Grande scholarship.
Jerry is also a member of the Key Club, a former VVHS soccer player and president of the school’s AVID Club. He was named the VVUHSD district-wide student of the month for April.