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New Slaton High principal speaks at Lions meeting

By Melissa McCaghren

Slatonite GM

Jesus Arenas has made a lot of choices in his time that have shaped who he is today.

He saw an opening for two basketball players at Texas Tech while a journalism student, and was one of the players out of 75 or so selected.

Arenas wrote for The Daily Toreador at Texas Tech, thinking that was going to be his career.

Instead, he went into education, and now is the Principal at Slaton High School.

Arenas spoke to the Slaton Lions Club Monday afternoon (July 17) during its weekly meeting.

He officially starts Aug. 1 as part of his contract agreement; however, he has been visiting the District every day since May 26.

Arenas is a graduate from Monterrey and played basketball at Wayland University.

He eventually Texas Tech and majored in Journalism.

Arenas was writing for The Toreador when the opportunity to try out for Texas Tech’s basketball team came out.

“We get a memo one day (at the paper) and it said that James Dickey and the team needs to have some tryouts because they have 11 players, NCAA sanctioned at the time, and one had a broken foot and the other a broken ankle,” he said, adding he saw how many were trying out. “So I go out there and I guess I had two of the best hours that I should have had ever up to that point, and so by the end of the trial they picked me and one other guy to be on the team.”

Arenas played for Dickey and later on Bob Knight when Dickey was fired.

When he graduated he had a job lined up in Journalism, an area he had won several writing awards in. He had also done his internship at Lubbock Avalance-Journal.

He then debated about playing basketball again, leaving him “in the wilderness,” and he went to talk to his coach about it. “I said, ‘no, you’re not going to feel lost and I don’t know if I want to do this reporter stuff, and if I want to play overseas or having a coach’,” he said. “And so he said ‘Well, why dont you go down to the education department and see what  you got to do to become a teacher.’ I said OK, so I went down and they tell me what I do. I come back and I told him, let me take these five classes during the summer,” he said, adding he graduated with a journalsim degree and then went on to student teach in the fall to earn his certification.

For more information, please read the Thursday edition of The Slatonite.

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