Riverbank High School Vice Principal, Dalila Hernandez, recently called senior Jenise Perryman up to the office to have her share her story for the “Every Student Succeeding” Program. The Association of School Administrators (ACSA), Stanislaus Charter and the Stanislaus County Office of Education (SCOE) honored 23 students from 14 school districts in Stanislaus County for the program last week with a breakfast held at the Martin G. Petersen Event Center in Modesto. Perryman was one of the students honored. Her grandmother, great grandmother, aunt, RHS Principal Dr. Sean Richey, band director Joey Aguilar, and attendance secretary Donna Bigelow were all in attendance along with a few RUSD Board members, there to show their support.
“It is a pretty good program,” expressed Perryman. “I have been through a lot and still managed to get good grades.”
This program honors students who have succeeded against the odds, surpassed expectations, or have won the hearts of their teachers and other staff. One student was selected to receive a $500 scholarship.
Although she did not win the top honor, Perryman was intrigued by all the other students’ stories of their struggles which she explained were more difficult than what she has been through and how they managed to be successful.
“It was different, especially after hearing all those stories from the other students,” Perryman explained about the recognition at the breakfast. “Some of the stories got me a little emotional because a lot of students have been through a lot more than I have.”
Some of those challenges in her own young life included moving around from place to place with her single mother. In her submission she explained that it was difficult to maintain a consistent home but school was always a priority to her. She has attended RUSD since pre-K and is now a senior at RHS. She lives with her Nana in Riverbank and since she has had a stable home her grades improved which allowed her to participate in extracurricular activities like volleyball, basketball, FAA, track and field, drama, and band throughout her four years at RHS. She is also a member of MJC Night Orchestra, Night Band and participated in a summer program called MoBand for the past two summers. Perryman struggled early in life but managed to overcome it.
In her senior year she will continue to keep up with her school work to get good grades, participate in a band concert this month and actively appear in some upcoming track and field competitions. After graduation Perryman will pursue higher education with a possible two year stint at MJC and then transferring to either Fresno State or Long Beach. She plans to major in music to perform professionally and possibly teach private lessons.
“Don’t give up,” Perryman advised fellow students. “People that have it a lot worse can still manage to continue to strive for their dreams.”