Victoria Pimentel was thrilled when she learned she was the Class of 2020 Bishop High School salutatorian. No stranger to hard work, she said she was proud of her accomplishment and was ready to put just as much effort into her future career in the medical field.
“I’ve wanted to be either the valedictorian or salutatorian ever since I started school,” she said. “And I knew that if I put my mind to it, I could eventually achieve my goal.”
Victoria is the daughter of Patricia Jimenez and Tony Pimentel Jr. She has attended the Bishop Consolidated Independent School District since pre-kindergarten.
During her senior year, Victoria was the National Honor Society president, HOSA vice-president and the senior class vice-president. She also participated in volleyball and tennis.
Victoria said while she was happy about graduation, she was also sad to have missed out on so many traditional senior activities because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Things like the prom, senior walk, senior trip,” she said. “Having all that taken away after years and years of hard work, it kind of bums me out.”
Victoria said she even qualified for HOSA’s state competition, something that she always wanted to do. However, the competition was canceled because of the pandemic.
“It’s kind of disheartening, because I never expected that I would be going to state,” she said. “And when I (qualified), I was really excited, and then just to have it taken away really hurt.”
Despite all of the activities that were canceled, Victoria said she was “really happy” that her graduation is still going forward, even if it won’t be the traditional commencement ceremony.
“Because it’s still going to be something special, where we can come together and celebrate our class and our accomplishments,” she said. “It means a lot that (the district) is doing all of this for us.”
This fall, Victoria will attend Texas A&M University-Kingsville where she will study biomedical science on her path to become a pharmacist.
“I’ve always wanted to be involved in the medical field in some way,” she said. “And I think a pharmacist is a good fit for me since I can’t really stand the sight of blood.”
Victoria said Bishop High School offers a pharmacy technician program, which she said has helped prepare her for her future career.
“It helped me to better understand what to expect in the field I’m going into,” she said.
As for her advice to incoming freshman, Victoria said if there’s one thing the COVID-19 pandemic has taught, is to not take anything for granted.
“And if you want something, just work hard for it,” she said. “It’ll all pay off in the end.”