Rio Rico students achieve top results in Cambridge International Exams - AZEdNews
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Rio Rico students achieve top results in Cambridge International Exams

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  • Dr. Carol Cullen/ Santa Cruz Valley Unified School District No. 35

Back Row L To R: Alan Camarillo, Samantha Schadler, Ramon Bustos, Esteban Urena, Jose Chacon-Quintero, Matthew Gray, Andres Cruz. Middle Row L To R: Alexis Ramos, Diego Soto, Samantha Coronado, Abigail Espinoza-Cervantes, Jizell Quijada, Alyssa Gonzalez, Eric Monge. Front Row L To R: Felipe Lopez, Kaitlyn Naff, Yeney Romero. Not In Photo: Lauren Clerc (graduated With Grand Canyon Diploma, August 2017) Photo Courtesy Dr. Carol Cullen

Eighteen students from Rio Rico High School received prestigious awards from Cambridge International Examinations to acknowledge their outstanding performance in the May 2017 Cambridge examination series, an exam given to students in over 40 countries around the world.

Three students received the highest scores in the United States, scoring above all other US students taking the exam. Receiving the highest award based on results from the Chemistry exam, is Esteban Urena, junior. This is the second consecutive year for Urena. In 2016, he received “Top in Country” for biology.

Andres Cruz, junior, received “Top in Country” award for mathematics.

Mathew Gray, sophomore, received “Top in Country” award for biology.

Students take exams in three or four subject areas, and are awarded a grade from “A” through “G” based on their performance on each exam.

The “Cambridge Scholar Award with Distinction” is awarded to students that earn an “A” on three or more of their exams. The following RRHS students earned this award:

Diego Soto, Junior
Kaitlyn Naff, Junior
Eric Monge, Sophomore
Esteban Urena, Junior
Jizell Quijada, Sophomore

The “Cambridge Scholar Award with Merit,” is awarded to students that earn at least a B on three or more of their exams. For example, a student could earn an “A” on three exams and a “B” on one; or, a “B” on all four exams. The following students earned this award:

Ramon Bustos, Jr., Junior
Samantha Schadler, Junior
Samantha Coronado, Junior
Abigail Espinoza-Cervantes, Sophomore
Yeney Romero, Sophomore
Jose Chacon Quintero, Sophomore
Alan Camarillo, Junior
Alyssa Gonzalez, Sophomore
Alexis Ramos, Junior
Felipe Lopez, Junior
Lauren Clerc (graduated with Grand Canyon Diploma, August, 2017)

The Outstanding Cambridge Learner Awards program celebrates the success of students taking Cambridge examinations in over 40 countries around the world.

Students will be recognized in April at an academic awards ceremony. Judy Kennedy at RRHS is coordinating the ceremony.

“Our students understand that success in the Cambridge program opens doors to the world’s best universities,” said RRHS Principal Shelly Vroegh. “Our students and teachers work hard to excel in these classes. I am so proud of their accomplishments.”

Santa Cruz Valley Unified School District No. 35 is a growing, dynamic school district covering approximately 267 square miles. The district operates five schools. Approximately 3,440 students are enrolled during the 2017-2018 school year.

Cambridge International School at SCVUSD No. 35: As part of the University of Cambridge system in Cambridge, England, Cambridge International School is the world’s largest provider of international education programs and qualifications for students 5 to 19 years of age. Over 9000 Cambridge schools are in more than 160 countries.

In 2012, Rio Rico High School was approved as a Cambridge International School, making SCVUSD the only district offering the Cambridge Program in Santa Cruz and Cochise Counties. Cambridge offers four levels of education for students in grades K-12. SCVUSD is implementing two of those levels: the middle and high school levels.

To learn more about Cambridge, visit:, or contact Judy Kennedy, RRHS Cambridge Coordinator, at 520-375-8727.