Scholar Profiles: Selene Contreras

I am so proud of Heritage Academy Laveen’s hard-working inaugural class of journalism scholars!

In August, 28 scholars joined me to learn beginning journalism. It was a complicated time to start this new class. All of us were working online because of the high rate of COVID-19. Few of the scholars were used to reading news publications let alone writing news articles. And many scholars in the class were starting their very first semester at HAL — knowing whom to call for interviews was not at all intuitive.

As we begin the second semester of the class, I am excited to share a few examples of my scholars’ work. The assignment was simply to interview another HAL scholar and then write about it. The interview subject did not have to be with a football star or a class president. I told them I just wanted to read about interesting scholars doing interesting things.

I think they did a great job. I hope you enjoy this sample of their work.

Cathy Creno, Journalism and Yearbook teacher  

Selene Contreras: Attitude, Ability, Motivation

By Alexa Gutierrez 

Sophomore Selene Contreras gets straight A’s at Heritage Academy Laveen. She also is a passionate and focused volleyball player and last semester was named one of HAL’s Quarterly Scholar Athletes. 

Selene discovered her love for sports at age seven as a softball player. Now, at 15 she is a starter on HAL’s  2A level varsity girls volleyball team. 

Selene said earning the scholar-athlete award was one of the best moments of the school year for her so far. 

“It was great,” Selene said. “I felt really happy and it made me feel proud as an athlete.  Tenth grade has been great.  I’ve definitely gotten to play more as a sophomore, and being a starter on varsity feels like such an amazing experience.”

Wanting to go far with her volleyball journey is Selene’s motivation. She lives for practices and for bettering herself. Before games, she likes to listen to positive uplifting music to get her in game mode. 

The quote that motivates her to keep her busy life balanced comes from College Football Hall of Famer and ESPN analyst Lou Holtz:  “Ability is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.” 

Outside of school and volleyball, Selene likes to chill with friends and her dog Bailey and play the piano. 

Selene said there is one thing she loves nearly as much as volleyball: Christmas.

“I love Christmas because of the feeling it gives,” she said. “It’s such a nice holiday with the lights, music and all the fun people can have.” 

We are grateful for Selene’s positive attitude and hard work on and off the court.  If you know of any scholars who should be featured, please contact Ms. Creno at

By |2021-02-04T14:07:38-07:00February 4th, 2021|Announcement, News|Comments Off on Scholar Profiles: Selene Contreras

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