Community service and involvement key for WHS senior Alex Mazariegos – The Globe
WORTHINGTON — Worthington High School senior Alex Mazariegos loves being involved, and not just at school, but also at church and in the community.
“I’ve always been someone who is open to everything, who gets involved in whatever I can do,” he said.
As a post-secondary enrollment option student, Mazariegos earned an associate’s degree in business management from Minnesota West Community & Technical College last week and will graduate from WHS next week.
In the fall, he will head to Southwest Minnesota State University at Marshall, where he plans to double major in business management and marketing, with a concentration in entrepreneurship.
He wants to start a business.
“I’m still brainstorming some ideas of what I want to do,” Mazariegos said. “It would be something local, something for my community to always give back to them.”
He plans to spend a few years working after college while he develops his business idea and makes a plan for it.
Mazariegos has always been involved in his community, and he knows how to stay organized and plan his time. It was almost a necessity considering the number of activities he has been involved in over the years.
Take FFA, for example, which Mazariegos was a part of throughout high school. He took an agriculture class in eighth grade and enjoyed it, but didn’t give it much thought until friends told him he should join them in FFA. At first he would show up at monthly meetings and the group would talk about their many activities, eat and play games.
He has been involved in dairy judging and last year in dairy judging – a competition that includes cheese sample identification and milk identification.
“To be honest, I was never a fan of cheese until I started this CDE (career and leadership development event),” Mazariegos said, but now he prefers mozzarella, colby and the cheddar.
He has also been the group’s treasurer for two years now.
While his family has a farming background in his home country of Guatemala, Mazariegos’ parents do not farm here. Herminio and Catalina Mazariegos have lived in Worthington for many years, and Mazariegos is grateful for their support.
“Having parental support is always the best and that’s one of the reasons I’ve been able to do so many of these things – to have my parents supporting me and supporting me in everything I do,” he said. “My mother always supports me and gives me advice, and my father is always there for me.”
He says his parents also always pushed him to do better, to get ahead and to have a good education.
Mazariegos is the second eldest in the family and loves his siblings very much. Humberto is the oldest. Christopher is a junior in high school and Hamilton is a sophomore. Her sister, Miness, is in eighth grade and the youngest in the family, Abel, is in sixth grade.
Mazariegos is involved in a range of other activities inside and outside the school. He plays the violin in the high school orchestra, but also with the Worthington Area Symphony Orchestra.
He’s part of the National Honor Society, which requires its members to volunteer at least 10 hours a year, but Mazariegos didn’t stop there. He volunteered more than anyone in the chapter and spent 168 hours doing community service in a year, helping out at the Nobles County Fair with the FFA, working to set up the stage at the windsurfing and at the music festival, helping the librarians with children’s programs. at the Nobles County Library and helping serve food at events.
He’s also not afraid to try new things and joined the tennis team last year.
Mazariegos is also very involved in his church, the Abundant Life Tabernacle on Clary Street, where he provides music but also does maintenance, reception, devotions, plays the piano and helps with the sound system.
“I like to do anything…pretty much wherever they need me, that’s where I help out,” he said. “I’m really involved in my church and I really like it.”
He greatly appreciates her faith and how it has also brought him to where he is now.
Given his involvement in so many activities, groups and events, Mazariegos has developed a number of skills and talents over the years, but there is one thing he still struggles with.
“Saying no is one of the hardest things for me,” he said. “…I’m learning to do this.”
His advice to students entering high school is to try now rather than wait.
“Don’t wait until you’re in sophomore or junior, then you’ll miss out on so many opportunities,” he said. “Be open to new ideas, be open to meeting new people. Surround yourself with good people. Surround yourself with positive people.”
He pointed out that he has benefited tremendously over the years from stepping out of his comfort zone and trying new things.
“It was a good trip. I learned a lot of things; doing my best is what brought me here,” he added. “The one thing I always wanted to do was do better, be better…I want to pursue that, I want to go after that.”
He also encouraged others to get involved.
“I like to give back to my community. I like to give back, and going forward, that’s something I will continue to do,” Mazariegos said. “You can give back…. It can make a very big difference. Small things can lead to big things.
“Giving back is part of who I am and I will continue to do so,” he added. “Wherever I go, wherever I go, I will always give and help others.”
Those who want to learn more about Mazariegos can tune in to Worthington High School’s graduation ceremony, which is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. on May 27. It will be broadcast live, as well as recorded and broadcast on WGTN-TV 3.
He finished writing his speech earlier this month.