Trading Grapes for Apples
9:38 PM Paloma Valley High School
Magalli Acosta’s Journey from Farm Laborer to High School Teacher
Although Ms. Acosta worked with her family in the fields, she was also a motivated student. Magalli graduated from West Shores High School where she earned the honor of Salutatorian (traditionally bestowed on the second highest achieving student) of her graduating class of sixty students. When asked about who was the top student (the valedictorian), Magalli becomes animated, and displayed a competitive streak. “That was my cousin. I had a 4.3 gpa, but West Shores High School was small and didn’t offer as many AP courses as I would have liked.”
|Quote from MagalliAcosta|
In a conversation about the value of experiencing truly hard work, Ms. Acosta shared her feelings that most students have lives where many things come too easily to them, such as a free education. Magalli also agreed that students would benefit from doing agricultural labor, as they would learn both the value of labor and gain an appreciation of what it takes to grow and bring food to the market.
However, Ms. Acosta worries about her family’s health, especially her father’s. She says her parents are healthy, but are now in their mid-50’s. Her father tells Magalli not to worry, but there is concern about the long-term effects of decades of extreme heat, back-breaking labor, and contact with pesticides.
|By: Roberto Verzo|