Sue Nellis, history
I worked for most of the summer at a dry-cleaning business. My dad worked at a dry-cleaning business (called Campus Cleaners, in Glendale, California) that he eventually bought. So I worked summers there from the time I was 16.
Bruce Baird, history
A friend and I made a wood-strip fiberglass canoe. We took it canoeing on the Buffalo River in Arkansas once we finished it. It was a wild ride because the Buffalo River didn’t have any dams.
Joanne Melinson, librarian
After my senior year, all the seniors and I went to Wildwood, New Jersey, for senior week. It was a tradition at our school. And that’s all I’m saying about that!
Patricia Fels, English
The summer after my sophomore year I took typing and driver’s ed. Then we spent a month in Mexico with another family. At the end of the summer, I went to a journalism workshop in Albuquerque. At that workshop I met a girl who ended up becoming my best friend (and maid of honor at my wedding). I also met a boy who became my college boyfriend for four years at Stanford.
Victoria Conner, science
There was one summer that I joined a traveling carnival. I helped set up and run the rides in addition to hanging out with the carnival people.
Kellie Whited, science
I spent the summer in Europe traveling with my high-school history teacher. We focused mainly on art and theater. It was an amazing experience.
Jane Batarseh, Latin
When I was 15, I went to live with my aunt for a month in San Francisco. She took me to Bodega Bay and let me wear her baby lamb fleece coat. I was forced to go out to dinner with her and drink cocktails.
Patricia Portillo, Spanish
Between junior and senior year, I attended a program at Sacramento State. It was a Latino youth leadership conference. It gave me a chance to connect with bright students who were also interested in college. There weren’t many of those students at my school in Anaheim, so it was a life-changing experience.
Daniel Neukom, history
Between my sophomore and junior year, I had the best summer of my life. I took a summer chemistry class, lost 15 pounds, grew two inches and became cool. I went from playing with electric slot cars to chasing girls and going to weekly YMCA dances.
—By Jack Christian