Friday, January 20, 2017

Teen earns college scholarship; credits St. Joe's, Argo with academic foundation

Summit resident Enrique Dominguez, a 2016 graduate of
Dominguez and SJS Asst. Principal Jason Porod.
Argo Community High School and a 2012 graduate of St. Joseph School, is a new recipient of the Secondino Scholarship, awarded by the University of Illinois Chicago and its sister campus, the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign.

UIC and UIUC noted that there are less than 10 students who receive the scholarship, established by Margaret A. Secondino in 1991, during any school year. Only one or two new students are chosen each year.

He is in pre-nursing at UIC. He was inspired to enter the field during his freshman year at Argo.

"I had an appendectomy," Dominguez recalled, "and I was impressed by an anesthesiologist."

His plan is earn his degree at UIC and continue his studies to become a nurse anesthesiologist.

He not only excelled at Argo, but graduated 11th out of a class of 497 graduates, among the top five percent of his graduating class. Dominguez took as many honors and AP classes as he was eligible for in his junior and senior years, so many that he dropped lunch his junior and senior years. His AP classes included biology, psychology, Spanish, literature, composition, calculus, chemistry, physics and world history.

Dominguez earned a 30 on his ACT and was named an Illinois State Scholar.

Despite a heavy class load, Dominguez also found time to participate in extracurricular activities. During his time at Argo, Dominguez participated in cross-country, winter running, track and tennis at one time or another.

In his freshman year, Dominguez was on the chess team, something he may have picked up from St. Joseph School, where chess is a very popular after-school activity. He was also on the Scholastic Bowl for two years and a member of Mathletes for all four years.

A highlight in Dominguez’s sophomore year was becoming a member of the National Hispanic Society, and earning membership into the National Honor Society his junior and senior years.

Being a member of the National Honor Society requires community service. Dominguez tutored students at Graves Elementary School in Summit for two years. He participated in Boys State and the American Legion as well. Dominguez still volunteers at La Grange Memorial Hospital. In addition, he is a lector at St. Joseph Church.

Not all Dominguez’s activities revolve around school and volunteer work. He also earned a black belt in taekwondo and the equivalent of an orange belt in hapkido. He is also teaching himself how to play the piano.

In high school, he was awarded the Argo Higher Education Foundation Scholarship and the Nicholas & Vivian Janettas Scholarship.

Before Argo, he said, he received a strong academic foundation at St. Joseph School.

"St. Joseph School gave me an excellent foundation that prepared me well for the future," Dominguez said during a visit to his alma mater. "In sixth grade, for example, I was given these assignments that enabled me to stretch creatively. I improved my writing, I improved my ability to get up and talk in front of people, sharing what I had created. I also was given the opportunity to be a lector at Mass--which I still am years later."

As Catholic Schools Week approaches, St. Joseph School officials have announced that they will host an open house from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 29. School Principal Lawrence Manetti, as well as faculty members and parents of current students, will be on hand to talk with parents of prospective students. For details, phone Manetti at (708) 458-2927.

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