Fresno Co high school holds academic signing day

FRESNO, Calif.

It's when students sign their letters of intent to attend a university for their stellar athletic achievements.

However, one Fresno County high school is changing the game when it comes to signing day.

Excitement around Fowler High School could be found all over campus Tuesday.

The first-ever academic signing day took place at the Fresno County campus which honored nearly 60 students for their excellence in academics.

"It was kind of a culmination of some ideas that we had about athletics you know. Everybody has the signing your athletic letter of intent. Either to play for a college team or a professional team. So here at Fowler High School we said why not do a letter of intent to the college that you've been accepted to," Principal Hank Gutierrez of Fowler High School said.

One by one each student signed their respective letter of intent with parents, family or friends by their side. The atmosphere rivaled those of their sports playing counterparts.

All 59 of them are going to various universities or junior college honors programs like Fresno Pacific, Fresno State or UC Santa Barbara.

One senior is going big by heading east to the Ivy League.

Aryssa Medina is going to Brown University on a full-academic scholarship to become a mechanical engineer.

"I've kind of always thought that we don't honor academics as much as sports you know, because you know big football team. You know championships. So I think it's really cool that they're implementing different honors awards," Medina said. This coming from a girl who's played three varsity sports every year during her high school career.

Her mom says sports is nice, but science is better.

"She's an outstanding child, so she's always had the drive to achieve more including sports. So I'm hoping that events like this and programs that she's been in will interact the kids more. And involve them more in an education business," Aryssa's mother, Amber Duran, said.

When kids feel more like rock stars, they give you a rock star performance where it matters most: the classroom.

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