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By Tom Ferrall

Armet, Chavez, Didier and Harmer are January Students of the Month


Last updated 1/11/2018 at 11:12pm

Darcy Kuran photo

The Students of the Month for January were honored Jan. 4 at North Coast Church and those in attendance at the congratulatory breakfast were introduced to four remarkable individuals in David Armet, Allison Didier, Katelyn Harmer of Fallbrook Union High School and Wendy Chavez of Ivy High School.

The awards breakfast is presented by the Fallbrook Student of the Month committee and is sponsored by several local organizations and businesses, including platinum sponsor Angel Society, gold sponsors Coldwell Banker Village Properties and Fallbrook Village Rotary, silver sponsors Fallbrook Republican Women Federated and Fallbrook PTSA, and bronze sponsors Fallbrook Vintage Car Club and Bella Dental.

Dr. David D. Farkas, newly-appointed principal at Fallbrook High School, presided over his first Student of the Month breakfast and began by introducing assistant principal Stephanie Osowski, who along with metal shop and wood shop teacher Jacob Bagnell, nominated Armet.

Osowski said the high-energy Armet can by found all over campus, engaging others and looking out for everyone.

"This young man is amazing, not just in his accomplishments in the things that he creates in metal shop, but in his heart and his character," said Osowski, who explained how Armet and some of his friends came to the aid of a special needs student who was being bullied by another student.

"David wasn't going to have any of that," said Osowski, adding that Armet and friends adopted the special needs student as a member of their group. "They took this young man around the campus and said, 'this is where we sit at this time, this is where we sit at this time, here are the great places to go.' That's just one of many examples that I've seen David do with taking care of other kids."

Bagnell explained how Armet's accomplishments – his entries at the San Diego County Fair have won best in show out of 15,000 students all four years – has helped Fallbrook High School's metal and wood shop program.

"He's brought a lot of light to our program and made it one of the strongest programs in the state of California," said Bagnell, adding that Armet and his team at Fallbrook High School competed in the SkillsUSA California competition and finished third for fabrication. "That's a huge accomplishment."

Armet, like all of the honorees, thanked the Student of the Month committee, community members, family and friends. He also thanked Dr. Hugo Pedroza, superintendent of Fallbrook Union High School District, for personally helping to fund one of his award-winning projects – a hydrogen fuel cell-powered go-kart.

"I didn't know what I was going to do with my life when I got here," said Armet. "Now I work as a motorcycle mechanic, fabricator. Welding is my dream, that's my career."

Armet plans to enroll in Summit College in El Cajon to attend a nine-month program that will get him started on a career in structural steel and classic car and off road fabrication.

Teachers Estay Cazares and Dan Bachman nominated Didier, who through her faith has managed to shine as a student and individual despite losing her mother to cancer.

"Allison is so deserving of this award," said Cazares. "She's very kind and compassionate toward others. She smiles every day. She just radiates God's love. She is such an outstanding model for her peers.

"Several years ago she lost her mother to cancer and instead of crumbling, she excels in everything that she does," continued Cazares. "She strives daily to be the best version of herself. She is proof that even when there are tough times and tragedies, you still need to go forward. She is just one of the best people that I know."

Bachman said Didier is "an outstanding young lady and great student" who makes it difficult not to call on her in class.

"It's so easy to go to Alison every single time because she does her work and she's always willing to share the answer," said Bachman. "So you have to check yourself as a teacher so you're not always relying on her expertise and dedication. She has great integrity and is a pleasure to have in class."

Didier plans to attend Palomar College for a year of general education before going on to the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago to study Christian ministry and major in human services.

"I am so grateful for a relationship with God," said Didier. "That has really been what's gotten me through these years of my life, through high school and some of the hardest times. So, that's a really good blessing for me. Later on in my career I want to be in ministry because of the impact that Christ has made on me."

Teacher Kathy Beal nominated Harmer, stating "she is what we want in Fallbrook High School, she's what we want in the world."

"We want kids to engage, we want them to interact with one another, we want them to be team players, we want them to be good examples, we want them to provide service to others," said Beal. "She does all that and she's only 17. She's definitely a natural leader and she does it all with just a kind, enthusiastic attitude that is really exemplary."

Beal added that Harmer, the senior class president, is an excellent student as well as a three-sport athlete.

"She has just flourished at Fallbrook High School," said Beal, adding that Harmer, who is very active at North Coast Church, constantly works to make her school a better place. "She has been on many committees that have served the students and the teachers and the community. She's very gifted in her service and her care for others."

Harmer said she was grateful for her faith and the opportunities afforded her at Fallbrook High School.

"My parents have raised me as a Godly child and I am so incredibly thankful for that," said Harmer. "My church family has given me opportunities to serve in the community and use my gifts to shine the light of Jesus. I'm thankful for ASB and the opportunities its given me to become a leader, and I'm thankful for Miss Beal and her positivity.

"Next year I plan on hopefully going on and attending North Coast School of Ministry," continued Harmer. "I want to become a youth pastor. Honestly, all I want to do is share the love of God and use my gifts in a way that serves him."

Teacher Lita Tabish nominated Chavez, who ended up at Ivy High School after getting into trouble at Fallbrook High School. Chavez completely turned herself around at Ivy, going from a person who was ready to fight to one who is now always ready to help.

"Wendy's developed into a motivated self-starter," said Tabish, who runs the Ivy Project program. "She's very concerned with her school work and graduation. She's a leader in my program and a positive force in my classroom. She gets along so wonderfully with all of the other students, and she motivates them and gets them going."

Tabish said that Chavez, who learned to play the piano through the Ivy Project program, has been soaring academically. "This last term she received all As and Bs," said Tabish.

Chavez, who plans to attend MiraCosta College and get into the nursing program, credited Tabish and Ivy High School for getting her on the right path in life.

"I was on a bad road and now I'm in a good place," said Chavez. "Not a lot of people see Ivy as a good place, I guess, but it is, and you get an opportunity to learn new things. I got to play the piano and try new things. I'm trying to design this year too. I'm really thankful that Ivy gave me a new opportunity to be great in life and in the future."

Chavez concluded by saying she enjoys working with kids and has a goal of becoming a pediatrician.


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