Continuing a long tradition of giving back to the students, many community and academic organizations awarded over 30 top John Muir High School seniors approximately $120,000 in cash scholarships and awards raised from their members at the annual Senior Awards Ceremony held on May 29 in the Muir gym. 

Muir’s Class of 2018 has been awarded approximately $500,000 in Cal Grants, another estimated $525,000 in academic- and athletics-based aid from the universities they will be attending, and an estimated $55,000 in tuition assistance from foundations and programs that encourage college enrollment. 

It is also estimated that the Pasadena City College Promise program will cover about $200,000 of the tuition and credit costs of these seniors attending PCC. This brings the total cash scholarships, aid and tuition grants awarded to the Class of 2018 to over $1.4 million.

The very unique John Muir Alumni Association was well represented, awarding 22 scholarships totaling $26,750. The classes of 1956, 1965, 1966, 1970 and 1977 are all currently awarding annual scholarships. Muir’s Mentoring for Partnership and Youth Development program awarded $10,000 in scholarships to its graduating seniors..

Pasadena/Altadena Links awarded seven scholarships totaling $8,000, and the NAACP awarded seven scholarships totaling $7,000. Retired Muir Principal Sheryl Orange awarded five scholarships totaling $5,000. The Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Pasadena Alumnae Chapter awarded four scholarships totaling $5,000. The Julia Scotten Jack & Jill Scholarship awarded two scholarships totaling $5,000. The Kiwanis Club of Altadena awarded four scholarships totaling $2,000, and the Kiwanis Club of Pasadena awarded two scholarships totaling $2,000.

The Pasadena Rotary and the Altadena Rotary each awarded two scholarships totaling $4,000. The Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority awarded three scholarships totaling $3,000. The Johnson Family awarded three scholarships totaling $2,000. The Quality of Life Center awarded two scholarships totaling $2,000. The JMHS PTA awarded two scholarships totaling $1,000, and the Schools First Credit Union awarded two scholarships totaling $400.

Twenty-two single scholarships and awards totaling over $32,000 were also given by the Association of Pasadena School Administrators, the Association of California School Administrators Region XV, Arnold’s Music, the Brandon Jackson Memorial Scholarship, Chick-fil-A, the Community Organization of Pasadena for Advancement in Education, the Crystal Pittman Greene Scholarship, the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Gerald Freeny Excellence in Service Scholarship, the JMHS Elizabeth Rothwell Scholarship for UC Davis, the JMHS Sylvia L. Jones Foreign Language Award, the Norman Schmidt Art Scholarship, the Nettie Piggee Citizenship Award, the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, the Outstanding Achievement in Workability Award, the Pasadena Alliance of African American School Educators, the Pasadena Foothill Realtors, the Robert Gould Memorial Scholarship, the Pasadena Educational Foundation, Edison STEM Scholarship, the Jackie Robinson Scholarship, the Shakespeare Club and Women in Action. 

The annual John Muir Service Awards, the highest honor the school confers, were awarded to Taicyanna Butler, Sydney Cattouse, Darby Gunter, Brenda Lopez Ardon, Alondra Nieto-Arredondo, Sepehr Ramshini, Osman Rodriguez, Rachel Ruiz-Garcia, Jayson Salvador, Jonathan Stevens, Rosa Trujillo, Richard Vega, Philomena Verceles and Julio Zelaya. 

The Seal of Bi-literacy was awarded to Kevin Arreola, Adrian Ayala, Alonso De La Torre, Jose Dominguez, Angel Flores-Pacheco, Brenda Lopez Ardon, Belen Luna-Rosales, Melissa Mejia, Alondra Nieto-Arredondo, Andres Pena, Osman Rodriguez, Rachel Ruiz-Garcia, Gabriela Sandoval, Carlos Sosa-Corona, Rosa Trujillo, Ricardo Vega, Valente Vera, Angel Villasenor Gonzalez, Javier Yanez and Julio Zelaya. 

National Honor Society membership was earned by Brenda Lopez Ardon, Alondra Nieto Arredondo, Jose Lino Dominguez, Osman Rodriguez and Tiyon Martin

Fifty-eight seniors earned placement on the Class of 2018 Honor Roll of those with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 over the four years at Muir. Four of those had a cumulative GPA of at least 4.0.

Thanks to all those who contributed to improving the lives of so many students, and congratulations to all the students who did so well during their time at Muir High School.


Scott Phelps is a member of the Pasadena Board of Education.