Contreras, Smith earn state honor

Cerro Coso Community College students Armando Contreras and Sarah Smith have been named to the 2014 Phi Theta Kappa All-California Academic Team, a statewide competition co-sponsored by the Community College League of California and Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society.

Building on the success of the national All-USA Team Program, Phi Theta Kappa launched the program to provide state-level recognition for top community college students.  Selection is based on grades, leadership and community service, and individual scores determine first, second and third teams.

Contreras and Smith are among the 76 California students chosen for this year’s awards. The honorees represent some of the best of the two million students enrolled in California’s 112 community colleges. Both are members of the Beta Kappa Chi chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa international honor society.

Contraras, a December 2013 graduate of Cerro Coso, earned all three liberal arts degrees the college offers and made the second California team.  He is currently finishing up transfer credits and plans to transfer in the fall.  Last semester he maintained a 3.8 grand-point average, taking 21 units while working two part-time jobs.  He hopes to obtain a law degree and practice law.  “It’s an honor to represent the best of the best in the community college,” said Armando.

Smith is an English major at Cerro Coso and will graduate this May.  Not quite sure what she wanted to major in, she credits two of her English professors with encouraging her to pursue a degree in a field in which she excels.  She serves as president of the International Club on the Ridgecrest campus and has found that getting involved in extracurricular activities on campus provides a setting to become involved and an opportunity to positively influence other students.  She made the third team.  Her career goal is to be an editor or publisher.  She also plans to transfer to a four-year university.

Cerro Coso Community College officials congratulated Armando and Sarah for their hard work and success.

Story First Published: 2014-04-30