Seton junior heading to Big Apple for big opportunity - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Seton junior heading to Big Apple for big opportunity

June 13th, 2019 development
Seton junior heading to Big Apple for big opportunity


A Seton Catholic Preparatory junior from Chandler is heading to the Big Apple to participate in a prestigious summer program.

Valeria Juvera Cruz will join a four-week Oxbrridge Academic Program, which its organizers say “has welcomed intellectually adventurous students to historic learning centers in the U.S., Great Britain, France and Spain for more than 30 years.”

Valeria initially thought she missed the opportunity to apply for the program because she missed a presentation by a representative from Oxbridge.   

A classmate who attended urged her to apply anyway, saying she would be a perfect candidate.

The classmate was correct.

As an incoming freshman, the straight-A student scored high on standardized tests, qualified for the school’s rigorous science and engineering program and was placed into three honors classes.

“I find Valeria to be hard-working, eager to learn and always looking for opportunities to enhance her education,” her counselor, Jerry Mullins, noted in his recommendation letter.

Valeria will depart June 27 for Manhattan, where she will stay in the dorms of Barnard College. She received a full scholarship for the program, which costs $8,550.

Oxbridge attendees may choose two immersive areas of study, including medicine, law, business, international relations and political science.

Valeria said her passion has always been medicine ever since her 5-year-old sister, Valentina, underwent surgery to repair a hole in her heart.   

The Oxbridge medical program will introduce her to the principles of human anatomy and physiology, the pathology and significance of certain diseases, the challenges of modern medical science and the variety of careers in medicine.

Valeria just won’t be poring over medical texts for a month. Oxbridge organizers have other activities in mind, listing possible excursions to the Empire State Building, the 9-11 Memorial, Central Park, Broadway shows, museums and Fifth Avenue.

But she also looks at this trip as a great educational opportunity.

“My dream has always been to study at Johns Hopkins University with the goal of becoming a cardiovascular surgeon,” said Valeria, who is working to be the first in her family to graduate from college. “I’ve always thought it would be so cool to perform life-saving surgery.”

For more than 60 years, Seton Catholic has served the East Valley of Phoenix as the only Catholic college preparatory high school, serving young men and women from parochial, private, charter, public and home schooling backgrounds.