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Bloomington valedictorian runs on efficiency (w/video)

By Sara Sneath
June 3, 2014 at 1:03 a.m.
Updated June 4, 2014 at 1:04 a.m.

Jason Valenzuela Jr., 18, stands outside  Bloomington High School, where he will be graduating as valedictorian. He will pursue a career as a registered nurse. "I want to do something with my life that matters; I want to help people," he said.

Jason Valenzuela Jr. uses the word "efficiency" as often as some his age use the word "like." He's the type of person who brushes his teeth in the shower.

He thought about becoming a doctor, but after research and a thorough cost analysis, he's decided that becoming a nurse is the path for him.

Not too surprisingly, Jason will graduate as the Bloomington valedictorian Friday.

His speech for the ceremony will focus on "seizing the day and making the best out of the time that you have."

In other words: efficiency.

"He had to grow up really quick. He's been a little man forever," said his mom, Melinda Perez. "Sometimes, we'll be in the middle of a conversation, and I'll have to say, 'Hold on, let me Google that.'"

Jason, 18, will attend Victoria College, where he plans to take nursing courses before transferring to University of Houston-Victoria.

"I wanted to do something that matters," he said about his career choice.

Earlier this year, Jason participated in a Nurse Aide Program taught at Bloomington High School in partnership with Victoria College.

"I see a sense of satisfaction in him that he's helping people," his mom said about the course. "And I don't see him stopping."

Perez said her son has always been headstrong.

"He will accomplish whatever he sets his mind to from grades to guitar," she said.

Other than the riffs coming off his electric guitar, Jason is pretty quiet. He's respectful to teachers, a trait he gathered by having a mother who also teaches.

"My mom is a teacher at the middle school, which helped me understand that teachers also have personal lives, and then, they have to come to school and put up with all these kids," Jason said.

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