Sibley Senior Spotlight: Nina Cerda
Sibley Senior Spotlight: Nina Cerda
Posted on 05/09/2014

The Senior Spotlight series features interviews with Sibley seniors who have shown commitment to academic excellence and personal achievement. The series will highlight two seniors each week until graduation.

Nina Cerda 
Senior Nina Cerda

SENIOR SPOTLIGHT: NINA CERDA
Daughter of Tracy Cerda and Rick Cerda, from Saint Paul
Before attending Sibley, Nina went to Heritage Middle School in District 197. 

During her time at Sibley, Nina has taken Advanced Placement Psychology, Statistics, and Language and Composition, and has also taken two College in the Schools Spanish courses. She is captain of the Softball team and manages the Girls Basketball team. 

Outside of school, Nina volunteers with the Animal Humane Society and serves as a leader for youth softball and catching clinics. 

After graduation, Nina plans to attend the University of Minnesota—Twin Cities to major in Animal Science and minor in Fisheries and Wildlife. She received four scholarships from the U of M. Her goal is to go to veterinary school and become a zoo veterinarian. 

District 197: How has Sibley prepared you to succeed after graduation? 
Nina: My experience at Sibley has prepared me for a lot. I've learned time management, how to prioritize assignments, how to make lasting friendships, and with all the advanced courses, I feel I'm prepared for more difficult courses. 

Who is your favorite teacher or what is your favorite subject at Sibley?
My favorite course at Sibley, by far, is AP Psych. Mrs. (Alison) Footh is a fantastic teacher and person. The way she brings fun and energy to class is unforgettable. The class itself is extremely interesting to me. From learning about abnormal psych to classic conditioning, or learning to parts of the brain, not a single thing was boring. And Footh's examples for a lot of subjects were priceless and unforgettable. 

What’s a memory from your time at Sibley that will always stay with you?
The bus ride to state this year. Being able to go to state for football is a great memory to have. I've never seen so many people so full of school pride.

What advice do you have for younger students about high school? 
Don't base your classes off of what your friends take. If you want to take Film Studies, do it — it was one of my favorite classes. Take the classes you want to take — that's the best part of having so many options here at Sibley. But be mindful of what you can handle. Don't drown yourself in school work. If you know you might not be able to handle multiple AP classes, don't take all of them. It's okay if you don't.

You should get involved in activities — it's an easy way to make friends that have things in common with you. Another thing with friends: be yourself. Don't change to be friends with people. If they don't want to hang out with the real you, they're not your real friend. 

Teachers are here to help. If you are struggling in a class, go to your teacher. They're here for your education, they want to help you. Don't be shy or feel uncomfortable, go get some help. A great relationship with a teacher is a great connection to have for the future. 

Anything else you'd like to share about your time at Sibley?
Have fun, don't waste it. You only go to high school once. 

Read interviews with other students featured in the Sibley Senior Spotlight series:
Aspen Doud - Aspen takes advanced courses and maintains a 3.9 GPA while being a leader on the Dance Team and Student Council.
Victor Corral - Despite starting his freshman year at Sibley knowing very little English, Victor has maintained a 3.9 GPA, excelled in athletics, and was offered academic scholarships from three different colleges. 
Kevin Kolstad - Kevin has made the A Honor Roll every quarter and takes many Advanced Placement classes. He is captain of the Sibley baseball and basketball teams, and also volunteers outside of school.

Read about other achievements by students in the Class of 2014:
   - Kate McKay named Henry Sibley High School’s 2014 Athena Award winner
   - Henry Sibley student Jake Jaeger wins Region Triple A Award
   - National Leadership training inspires Sibley student Jose Salazar to make change
   - Sixty-five Sibley students earn AP Scholars honors
   - Three Henry Sibley seniors recognized by National Merit Scholarship Program
   - Meet the School Board's new Student Representative, Mikaela Ziegler