Standout McLane High School student shares plans for college

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- For one McLane High School valedictorian graduation day means so much more than picking up a diploma. She's the first in her family to graduate from high school and she's doing it with honors.

Giving a presentation in Spanish comes naturally to Itzel Gastelum because it's her first language. The McLane High School student made her way to the U.S. from Mexico at the age of ten.

Fast forward to 2015: she's used inspiration from her parents as her fuel to keep going. Throughout her four years at the school she maintained an above-A average while serving as a member of the Key Club and the Spanish Club. On top of that, she managed to squeeze in some AP classes as well.

Itzel is a standout student who's made a lasting impression on her teachers. Some using the words "extraordinary" and "dedicated" to describe her work ethic.

McLane High School Teacher Roy Graves said, "She will succeed and be a very enlightening and empowering individual for the rest of society. I see good things for her in the future."

The aspiring nurse plans to take what she's learned at McLane with her when she heads to UC San Diego in the fall. She says she'll miss her daily walks to and from school with her siblings and her classmates, who've become her friends through the years. Her words of wisdom for the graduating class: stay focused.

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