We are proud to share this guest blog post by Dariela Galindo sharing her story as a student at Travis Early College High School. Dariela also wrote for us when she was a sophomore.
My name is Dariela Galindo. I’m 18 years old and a senior at Travis Early College High School, a dual-enrollment school in San Antonio ISD (SAISD). As a senior this year, I am very honored that I will be graduating both high school and college with a high school diploma and associate’s degree from San Antonio College (SAC).
Attending a school as unique as Travis has been a very rewarding experience. As an early college high school, all students have the opportunity to take college courses through SAC (part of the Alamo Colleges system) while taking their required high school classes. This means that at the end of their high school career, they will graduate from both high school and college. What makes Travis so distinctive is the opportunity it gives all students who are seeking a college education to earn up to two years of college credit. Along with the opportunity to take rigorous college courses, Travis offers Advanced Placement, AVID, and honors classes as part of their college-preparatory curriculum.
A typical day at school starts with me arriving and checking in at Travis before leaving for my SAC classes. The school encourages us to walk to SAC in groups or pairs for safety reasons. When we return to Travis, the door monitor unlocks the door for us. The Alamo Colleges Police Department is always on bikes and parked on the street where students cross between Travis and SAC, ensuring all of the student’s safety. For the most part, everyone has different schedules and so their routine could vary. Depending on how many classes I have in the morning at SAC, I stay on the SAC campus and visit the advocacy center or events in the mall area in between class times. After my class block ends, I return back to Travis for AVID, a college preparatory course, and lunch. Depending on if I have a SAC class after lunch, I either sign back out to go to SAC or stay for my Travis classes. And finally, I end the day catching up on work during Mascot Time in my AVID class.
Once that bell rings, I’m off to my clubs! This year, I was Vice President of the National Honor Society, co-president of the Spanish club, head photographer and senior editor for the yearbook club, and co-captain for the Linux division of the Cyber Team. This was the first year Travis participated in Cyber Patriots, a cybersecurity program that is now offered through SAC. Although this was our first year competing, we were recognized as “Rookie Team of the Year” at this year’s San Antonio Mayor’s Cyber Cup. What is so unique about the clubs offered at Travis is that there’s something for everyone. For example, in Spanish club, we learned about Spanish culture, language, and history. We fundraised money throughout the year, held movie nights, and ended the year by using our fundraiser money to take the members to the San Antonio Museum of Art to see the Latin American exhibit and Market Square to practice our Spanish-speaking skills at Mi Tierra.
My experience at San Antonio College has been both remarkable and rewarding. I’ve taken advantage of the many resources provided all across campus, including the Student Advocacy Center which provides grab-and-go snacks, the SAC Honors Academy Program, Writing Center, and STEM Center. These academic and community services have helped me not only engage with SAC more but have contributed to my success as a dual enrollment student. I’ve never encountered a community as welcoming as the SAC community. During the semesters I have been on campus, SAC has always done its best to aid students with directions, free snacks, and many other resources. I am very grateful that I have never felt excluded from the SAC community as a dual enrollment student.
The great thing about Travis is that you don’t need to be the smartest, most resourceful student coming into the school. With college preparatory classes like AVID, you have teachers who are dedicated to making sure you are ready for college. Taking AVID all four years of high school will teach you how to develop organizational habits, communication skills, study habits, and many more strategies to become successful in college. It took me some time to develop my organizational habits, like how to manage my time with homework and extracurriculars, which study habits work best for me, and how to take responsibility for my learning. What has helped me keep on track the most is having access to my Travis and SAC grades both on my phone and school-issued computer through the Canvas app. If I ever have concerns about my grades, assignments, or absences I can easily contact my professors through Canvas. In this process of taking responsibility for contacting professors and counselors, I have learned to advocate for myself and build relationships with my college professors. And with the dedicated staff and friends, I never felt that I had to navigate both high school and college alone.
As a proud product of both Travis and SAC, I’m delighted I will be transferring 52 college hours to my decided university. I have obtained over $700,000 dollars in merit scholarships from many universities, both in-state and out-of-state, and I attribute this success to the rigor provided by Travis and SAC. Looking back at my accomplishments, I know I made the right decision attending Travis. I gained valuable skills that will make me successful both in and outside the classroom while getting a head start on my education. I am forever grateful for the opportunity and I encourage other students to take advantage of this opportunity being provided by SAISD and Alamo Colleges.
Charter Moms Chats
Dariela Galindo is a senior at Travis Early College High School in SAISD.
Read More Student Stories
- “Carolina Barrios, Virtual Student at Incarnate Word High School,” Carolina Barrios, San Antonio Charter Moms, January 3, 2022
- “CAST Med High School Is Helping Kailey Cazares Reach Her Goals,” Kailey Cazares, San Antonio Charter Moms, September 2, 2021
- “Student Stories: Mia Rodriguez, Senior at the School of Science and Technology San Antonio,” San Antonio Charter Moms, September 9, 2020
Read More About SAISD
- “SAISDFamilia: Frances Santos, English Language Arts Chair,” SAISD, March 10, 2023
- “Children at Risk rankings are back — but San Antonio schools didn’t crack Texas’ top 10,” Danya Perez, San Antonio Express-News, February 15, 2023
- “San Antonio Teachers We Love,” Kathleen Petty, San Antonio Magazine, November/December 2022 (featuring Rosa Dockal, Spanish teacher at Travis Early College High School)
- “SAISD Enrollment Guide for Choice Schools in 2023–24,” San Antonio Charter Moms, October 11, 2022
- “Teacher Tales: Jefferson High School International Baccalaureate World School in San Antonio ISD,” Ralf Halderman and Chris Stanley, San Antonio Charter Moms, November 18, 2020
- “SAISD, Alamo Colleges partnership working for students,” Yvonne Katz, San Antonio Express-News, December 17, 2017
- “Two Bexar County schools named National Blue Ribbon honorees,” Alia Malik, San Antonio Charter Moms, September 28, 2017