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School spirit spurs Oak Forest teen

Jessy Sandoval Oak Forest High School said she might one day be an entrepreneur.  |  Supplied phoby Cheryl

Jessy Sandoval, of Oak Forest High School, said she might one day be an entrepreneur. | Supplied photo by Cheryl Harris-Sumida

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Updated: July 13, 2014 3:34PM



When it comes to school spirit, it would be hard to beat Jessy Sandoval, who will be a senior at Oak Forest High School this coming school year.

In fact, when she heads back to school, Sandoval, 17, will be in high gear. Last school year, as president of her junior class, Sandoval had a way of galvanizing students to get on board and spread the spirit. This coming year, she will be the executive president of student council, presiding over the student councils for each grade level.

“I love student council,” she said. “My favorite part is the fact that we get everybody together for a common purpose, and I like seeing things happen. We start with nothing and see an entire plan develop.”

She says an activity called Hall Decs, where students decorate a hallway that is assigned to their class during Homecoming Spirit Week, is especially fun.

“That is always my proudest moment because we start with an idea how we want to decorate our hall,” she said.

Last year, the theme was Cities Around the U.S.

“We had Las Vegas. Our class competed against the other grades and we’ve won it three years in a row,” said Sandoval, who, coincidentally, has been class president for all three years.

Yes, Sandoval’s class, the Class of 2015, has won the Spirit Stick and award for Hall Decorations every single year.

“That is how my grade is,” Sandoval said with pride. “I love that I can aim to do something and we have all these people who are so willing to do it. I like coming together to get something done and help people out.”

She hopes her senior year will be no different.

“At the end of Hall Decs, I hope we will have an incredible hallway of decorations,” she said. “As president of my class, I get really into it, but this last year, everyone wanted to win so bad. I was touched. I am about to cry now because it meant a lot to me that people could care so much about doing something.”

In addition to her work on student council and as class president, she ranks No. 1 in her class and is a member of Scholastic Bowl; the science, math and ecology clubs; track and cross country: Leadership Council and National Honor Society.

She is also a Hugh O’Brien Youth Ambassador, the secretary of the energy club, a Bengal tutor and a freshman advisor, and she loves public speaking.

Not surprising, Sandoval, who is a very high-energy individual, says she also loves coffee.

She said her parents, Mike and Jule Sandoval, of Oak Forest, are her mentors.

“I take a page from both of my parents’ books,” she said. “They both have a huge impact on me. My mom is the creative spark in my life. She is notorious for having hundreds of puzzles all over the place at a time. She helps me write papers and teaches me a new vocab word or asks me a crazy equation all the time.

“My dad keeps me grounded,” she said. “Doing all these things, I might go nuts, but my dad is always there to remind me to calm down, don’t rush and live in the moment. So I try to make every day count because you never know what you have left. He is also a teacher, so he loves kids and he is very sentimental, too.

“I just love being with people and I value human interaction,” she said.

For college, she would like to attend either the University of Illinois or Northwestern University and major in business.

“In 10 years, I might have written my first novel and I might be an entrepreneur running my own business and doing something different,” she said. “I just want to make a difference for somebody.

“It would be cool if I could be Elon Musk, the founder of Tesla Motors. I think he has an innovative mind.”



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