From the daily archives: Thursday, October 13, 2011

Calexico, Calif. — Customs and Border Protection officers at the Calexico East port of entry seized 39 pounds of cocaine yesterday that involved three young males from the Coachella Valley, California.

The seizure occurred at about 7:30 a.m. when officers with the port’s Anti-Terrorism Contraband Enforcement Team were conducting inspections of vehicles and travelers and targeted a blue 1999 Chevy Astro van pulling a tow dolly for inspection. A detector dog alerted to the dolly and both vehicle and occupants were all referred to the secondary area for further examination.

An intensive inspection that included the use of a density meter device led officers to the discovery of 16 wrapped packages of the narcotic concealed inside a non-factory compartment in the center frame of the dolly. The estimated street value of the narcotic is approximately $351,000.

CBP officers arrested the driver, a 25-year-old male Mexican citizen, and passengers, 23-year-old male Mexican citizen and 26-year-old male U.S. citizen, for the alleged narcotic smuggling attempt. All violators were turned over to the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents and transported to the Imperial County Jail were they currently await arraignment.

CBP placed an immigration hold on the Mexican citizens to initiate removal from the United States at the conclusion of their criminal proceedings.

CBP seized the narcotic, vehicle and dolly.


By Patricia A. Aguilar
On Friday, October 7th, 2011 at ten in the morning San Diego State University-Imperial Valley awarded five students with scholarships that together were worth ten thousand dollars. The first scholarship to be awarded was the ‘Alejandro and Florencia Nogales Scholarship’, followed by the ‘Emily Wogaman Scholarship’ and the newly established ‘Alicia Mendoza Scholarship’; the ‘Alicia Mendoza Scholarship’ was named after active community member and Calexico City advocate Ms. Alicia Mendoza.  The scholarships each are awarded once a year to full-time SDSU-IV students who meet the various requirements.
In a ceremony held in front of SDSU’s famous entryway friends and family gathered to watch as Dean of the Campus Dr. David Pearson, Ms. Alicia Mendoza, and Nogales Family Scholarship Representative Ms. Florencia Nogales each awarded and congratulated the students as they were presented with an award letter.  Dr. Pearson quoted Mr. Luis Nogales in his speech and called him a ‘true champion of higher education.” and expressed how it was his influence, support, and generosity for scholarships that paved the road for the students of today.
Receiving the ‘Alejandro and Florencia Nogales Scholarship’ was Alya Marissa Huyrch, Jose Luis Martinez, and Christopher Heim.  The ‘Emily Wogaman Scholarship’ was awarded to Toni G. Bracamonte and the ‘Alicia Mendoza Scholarship’ was given to Alysa Yran Teran.  lysa Yran Teran.
Ms. Huyrch is a Liberal Studies Major and is a senior this fall semester. After graduation her plans are to continue her education and enter the field of education as a teacher.  Mr. Martinez already has his Bachelor’s in Psychology and is completing a Graduate Program in Social Work. He hopes to either become involved with public service or become an academic advisor in higher education.  Mr. Heim is a Psychology Major in his senior year and plans to obtain another degree in International Business with an emphasis in European marketing and finance with the hopes of working overseas when done.  Ms. Bracamonte is a History Major and is also a senior this fall. She plans on continuing her education with a Master’s degree in History and a PhD in Philosophy; she plans to teach History later on.  Ms. Teran unlike her peers is a sophomore and is currently contemplating a double major in Communications or Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences. She would like to one day work as an elementary teacher or a speech therapist.
It is clear that with ambitions such as these, all of the scholarship recipients have a bright future ahead of them.


(Holtville Tribune Article on Education by Carol Hann, Professor Emerita, Imperial Valley College)
The tradition of enthusiastic local support for Imperial County schools has a rich heritage. Approximately sixty-six school districts once covered the Imperial County region; many of them were established under the auspices of San Diego County when Imperial County was part of San Diego County. The San Diego County Board of Supervisors controlled schools in our region until 1907.
The San Diego County Supervisors approved a petition for the formation and construction of schools in the far eastern area of our desert region. This area was populated with miners and their  families and by the Quechans and Cocopahs. In April, 1891, San Diego County officials created the Laguna District in the sparsely populated area along the Colorado River. Approximately eleven children enrolled when the school was formed. The school closed at the end of the 1894-95 school year.
Another school was then formed near the Colorado River. In March, 1896, the San Diego County Board of Supervisors authorized the formation of the Hedges School District after families in the area petitioned for an official school to be formed. It is believed that of the eighty-one children who attended Hedges school, sixty-eight were from the Yuman tribe. The school was located between the eastern side of the sand dunes and the Cargo Muchacho Mountains, near the American Girl Mine.
A few weeks after establishing the  Hedges School District. San Diego County Supervisors approved the formation of Picacho School District. This school was approximately twenty miles northeast of Hedges and near the Colorado River. The children attending Hedges and Picacho schools were from families who worked the gold mines of the area. With the demise of mining, the school enrollment declined and the Hedges School District ceased operating in 1906 when it merged with the Picacho School District.
In 1901, more families started arriving in the Imperial Valley. These early settlers recognized their responsibility to provide financing for sound educational facilities for their children. In September, 1901, Mr. J. E. Carr of Nevada established the first recognized elementary school in Imperial Valley. Mr. Carr supervised the construction of the “ramada shade” school. This first school was built in what was then station: ten miles south of Imperial and five miles northwest of Calexico, near present-day Heber. A tent was erected next to the ramada to serve as Professor Carr’s housing accommodation.
Approximately fifty pupils attended this first school. Students came to school by burro, donkey, horse, or on foot; it is recorded that some students walked over eight miles to school.
After the enrollment growth of Mr. Carr’s school, there was a tremendous need for the establishment of more schools, and San Diego County Board of Supervisors were petitioned to develop a systematic organizational plan for the creation of more school districts in the area. During the 1901-03 school year, Hugh J. Baldwin, San Diego County School Superintendent, recommended the development of four more elementary schools in the Imperial Valley region.
Bonds were sold to raise money for school construction. Southern Pacific Railway agreed to purchase the bonds from districts that had been legally formed. In 1903 the first elementary school bond election in the Colorado Desert region was held, and the Imperial School District received overwhelming support or its $6,000 bond issue.
The Valley’s population grew, and in 1904 a second elementary school was formed west of Heber. That same year a tent-school was established in Calexico.
The Valley’s first high school was formed in Imperial in 1906 and was called Imperial Valley Union School. High school age students from throughout the valley attended this school. Dormitories were constructed for both students and faculty. Students who did not live on campus often rode mules, burros, or horses to school. Shelters were constructed to protect the animals.


LA MIRADA, CA (10/13/2011)(readMedia)– Steven Orozco, a freshman at Biola University and a resident of Imperial, CA was among 200 students who received the college’s highest scholarship – the President’s scholarship – for the 2011/2012 academic year.

Biola awards incoming freshmen with the President’s scholarship – $9000 per year for four years – upon their entering the University and meeting the requirements of the scholarship. About 15 percent of this year’s incoming class received this award.

Students are considered for this scholarship upon admission to the University based on their GPA and SAT scores. The requirements of the scholarship are a GPA of at least 3.10 and a combined SAT score of 1240, both math and English scores. According to Biola’s admissions department the average recipient of the President’s scholarship have a GPA of 3.5 and an SAT score of 1400.

At a special luncheon recognizing the President’s Scholarship recipients, Provost David Nystrom encouraged the freshmen to practice self-reflection during their college years and be open to the spirit of God.

“At Biola we want to help you think through what is the human condition. We have high hopes of what God will do in your life while you’re at Biola,” said Nystrom. “God wants you to be the most apt refine agent for his purpose.”

Students must maintain a GPA of 3.5 to continue to receive the scholarship year after year.

Biola University offers over 145 academic programs in six schools. A private Christian university located in Southern California on the border of Los Angeles and Orange counties in the city of La Mirada, Biola has remained committed to its biblical foundation for more than 100 years. U.S. News & World Report recognizes Biola as one of the “Best National Universities” and for two years in a row as one of the country’s “Up and Coming” national universities. For more information, visit or call (562) 777 – 4061.

On the web:


By Luke Phillips
With Redevelopment Agency funds currently frozen by the state the city may be looking to the community to help revitalize and restore Mack Park and install badly-needed sports fields for the city’s youth.
Holtville City Manager Alex Meyerhoff told the city council at their meeting Monday that he had met with Holtville Soccer League president Luis Imperial about the possibility of turning Mack Park into a community project.
“I think that it’s something we can do with some city labor, donations and a lot of community spirit,” Meyerhoff told the council.
Imperial, along with Holtville Little League president Jose Larios, came to the council several months ago seeking support for a community project at the park to increase the capacity of local youth sports organizations who are in dire need of more space to play. But instead of utilizing community resources to build new fields the city took the lead on the project and went to a professional design firm to have plans drawn up at the suggestion of former city manager Laura Fischer. The resulting plans by the firm Architerra would have cost nearly a million dollars to construct, more than twice what the city had budgeted for the project. The project fell by the wayside when residents couldn’t agree on which of the features they wanted to see included and which should be cut to save on costs.    Meyerhoff says he’s now in discussions to go back to the original plan and finish the project though work by the city’s public works department, volunteer work and donations for local residents and service organizations and he says he’d like to see work on the project finished by the end of the year.    “I think it would be a good way to close out the calendar year,” he said.

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