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Meet the Foundation's Student Board Members

Two talented and energetic students – Albuquerque High’s Ronja Steinbach and Atrisco Heritage Academy’s Joseph Barbara – have been recommended to join the APS Education Foundation’s Board of Directors for 2017-2018. Steinbach and Barbara join Rio Grande High’s Julio Chavez, who served on the board of directors in 2016-2017 and will be a senior this year.

Joseph Barbara

Barbara, who is a senior at AHA, is the school’s National Honor Society president and is involved in a variety of clubs, including Jaguars for a Positive Change and New Mexico HOSA (Health Occupations Student Association). He plans to attend the University of New Mexico with hopes of someday becoming a surgeon.

“I think that my love for helping people helped me to understand that in the medical field, helping people is all you do,” he said. “This is how I plan to help my community, using my resources and talents. Barbara also participates on the Atrisco Heritage cross country, swimming and track teams.

Ronja Steinbach

Steinbach is a junior and participates in a variety of clubs as well, ranging from MESA (Math, Engineering, Science and Achievement) to Model UN to the National Honor Society. She will be the Bulldogs’ junior class president when school begins in August.

She looks forward to attending college with an eye toward studying marine biology in college. In addition to English, she speaks German and is passionate about learning both Spanish and French. She has played violin for nine years and is in Albuquerque High’s orchestra program.

Julio Chavez

A senior, Julio is on the Rio Grande student senate and the school’s National Honor Society. He takes Advanced Placement classes, as well as honors and analytical courses. He is interested in the law and is taking advanced Spanish courses so that he may speak and write the language fluently.

As with all our student board members, Julio comes highly recommended by his principal and other staff members. Here is an excerpt of his application: “I aspire to have a leadership role in my community as well as give back. I intend on making the community that I was born in and raised in to become a greater one than it currently is.”

The Foundation’s 23-member board helps guide the work of its staff and the grants it makes to APS schools. Student members have votes in all decisions and are part of the Disbursement Committee, which is charged with selecting grant recipients at both the classroom and school/department levels. In 2017-2018, the Foundation will grant more than $500,000 to projects throughout the district, a record.

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