The Wakefield Chieftain

Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

Ileana getting the award with Dr. Willmore.

Ileana getting the award with Dr. Willmore.

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






“Ileana is the type of person that’s really helpful to other students who may not get a certain concept. She’s really good at a lot of things, so I can’t wait to see where life takes her.” -Mr. Kelly

On Thursday October 4th, senior Ileana Mendez was recognized at the School Board Meeting in celebration of 2018 Hispanic Heritage Month, for her exemplary leadership at Wakefield. Anyone who knows Ileana knows that she is an extremely hard working and active student. From sports to clubs, Ileana does it all!

There are a lot of stereotypes that Hispanics aren’t smart or that they’re criminals. It’s nice to be a role model for them and represent them and say well, we’re not. We are people that work hard and are involved in our community.”

— Ileana Mendez

The Hispanic Leadership Award is where one Hispanic student from each Arlington High School gets recognition for showing selfless acts and being able to overcome adversity. Ms. Mathis nominated her and said that the award, “signifies that there may be a lot of barriers that could keep these students from going to college and despite those barriers they’re able to persevere. A lot of their parents may not have been born here so when they came here they had to adapt.”

This award helps shine a light on these hard working students. Ileana said, “I think often Hispanic students don’t feel helpful. I know for me I never really felt like I was a big impact in the school. And there are a lot of stereotypes that Hispanics aren’t smart or that they’re criminals. It’s nice to be a role model for them and represent them and say well, we’re not. We are people that work hard and are involved in our community.”

With such a busy schedule, it takes a lot of self control and prioritizing to keep up. Ileana said, “when I’m tempted to go on my phone, I put it far away out of reach so I won’t be able to touch it. I think I have good time management, and I use a lot of resources in school like Warriors’ Period and lunch to get stuff done.” Ileana keeps a planner with her and schedules her day by the hour to make sure she gets everything done.

Ileana is always working on bettering herself. When she found out she won the award her immediate thought was, “it made me feel very happy. It’s also kind of adding pressure to keep getting better and better.” Ileana has been going above and beyond since her sophomore year. Mr Kelly said, “two years ago Ileana took AP Economics which is a big challenge for a sophomore. Ileana was magnificent, a really hard worker, really interested in learning. Always enthusiastic about life and brought a lot of energy to class.”

Mr. Burns summed up how so many people feel about Illeana in one word on Twitter: Hero.

While Hispanic Heritage Month has come to an end, it is important that students get the recognition they deserve year round. Ms Mathis said, “we have so many awesome student at Wakefield. I wish we could give awards out every day.” Ileana is just one example of the hard working and selfless Hispanic students here at Wakefield. She has accomplished so much during her high school career and will only continue to grow.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

About the Writer
Elena Arrowsmith '19, Editor In Chief

Hi my name's Elena! I'm a senior here at Wakefield and I've been on The Chieftain since my freshmen year. I work at Dogma Bakery where I get to hang out...

Leave a Comment

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Left
  • Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

    Features

    Matthew Shepard Finally Laid to Rest: Equal Club Witnesses Interment

  • Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

    Features

    Warriors Start the Year Strong

  • Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

    Features

    Wakefield Upstanders – Week of Action

  • Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

    Features

    The History of Homecoming

  • Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

    Features

    Ethan and Charlotte Start the Year on a Good Note

  • Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

    Features

    SPIRIT WEEK: 10/12-10/19

  • Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

    Features

    Special Olympics is Fun for Everyone

  • Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

    Features

    New Dress Code: Wakefield is Listening

  • Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

    Features

    New Additions to the Amazing Wakefield Staff!

  • Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez

    Features

    Dear Freshmen, You’ve Got This!

Navigate Right
For Wakefield students, by Wakefield students
Hispanic Leadership Award Winner Ileana Mendez