CTE/Athletics Student Spotlight: Johnathan Grimaldo

Parents: Claudia Cantu-Grimaldo and Isidro Grimaldo, Jr.

Previous schools: Los Fresnos Elementary and Los Cuates Middle School

College: The University of Texas at Austin (hopeful)

Major: Computer Science with a focus in Cybersecurity

School activities: DECA (state finalist), BPA (state finalist), BPA, NHS, football

Career plans: Public sector job first and then eventually own a business

Inspiration for academic success: My parents have inspired me to succeed academically. As a child, I did not know the importance of good grades, but I trusted my parents.  They set high expectations for me since I started school at three years old.  They taught me to consistently do my best in anything that I did so now I have high expectations for myself.  They are also my role models. They have taught me to work hard for what I want, always strive to be my best, and enjoy what I am doing or focusing on. 

Life challenges: One of the most significant challenges that I have had to overcome is my laziness.  Between my classes, homework, and extra-curricular activities, my days are long, and sometimes I would just want to relax and not do anything. On other days I would just procrastinate my homework and project deadlines to the very last minute. I soon realized that if I had just put my mind to it and got it done when assigned, the task would have been done sooner. I learned the hard way to focus and prioritize my time.  However, the good news is that I soon realized that I had more free time if I concentrated and apply myself.

Importance of participation: The organizations that I have participated in every year of high school are DECA and football. In DECA, I have learned the basics of starting a business including the importance of marketing, and what financial institutions and investors are looking for. Football has taught me discipline, responsibility, accountability, teamwork, and resilience. There are times in life that things may not work out as planned and do things that you don’t want to do, but you have to do them because they are important.  Football has taught me how to do that. It has also taught me that there are situations when you prepare for something as best you can, the outcome is different and you have to adjust your strategy, then go again.   

Balance of academics and school activities: While in high school I learned that time management and not to procrastinate are important.  I learned to start with the things that are the most time-consuming or most difficult and complete them first. As soon as I get an assignment, I try to finish it the same day depending on whether it is just daily homework or a project. If it is just homework I try to finish it the day it is assigned even if it is not due until two days later. If it is a project I try to work on it little by little whenever I have time. I then work on it two weekends before it's due.

Career goals: Today’s world is driven by technology and this will continue into the future.  I chose this field to be able to make a positive difference and job security.  Cybersecurity is important for businesses, our government, and even individuals. It can impact an individual’s personal information, including health and financesl and I want to be on the right side of this.