Harlingen South’s top graduates share recipes for success

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Valedictorian Jacob Cano and Salutatorian Emerson Williams. (Courtesy: Harlingen CSID)

HARLINGEN — Time management.

The top grads from Harlingen High School South’s Class of 2024 say the most meticulous management of time was the most difficult — and the most vital — tool for success.

“I always kept a schedule of everything I needed to do and get done,” said Emerson Williams, this year’s salutatorian.

“I always stayed on track so I never turned in anything late,” said Emerson, 18. “I always gave it my full effort. I set a schedule and made sure I got everything done on time.”

Same for Valedictorian Jacob Cano, 18.

“I feel like preparation was key,” Jacob said. “I always prepared myself for a test. I feel like I never procrastinated. I always started things on time, and I never waited until the last minute.”

Not surprisingly, Jacob is a super achiever and a multi-tasker.

While taking top scores in the classroom, he also played football, participated in track, Parent Teacher Student Association, National Honor Society, and the Hope Squad. All that plus top grades shows a resourcefulness and a discipline that will surely take him far.

Hope Squad is a student organization which seeks to help fellow students struggling with mental health issues.

He gave a special shout out to his English teacher, Dustin Vos.

“He would just always stay after school and if I had any questions he would help me,” Jacob said. “I would just like to thank God and my family for always supporting me.”

Valedictorian Jacob Cano and Salutatorian Emerson Williams. (Courtesy: Harlingen CISD/Facebook)

So powerful has been the influence of God and teachers and family that he’s heading to the University of Texas at Austin where he’ll major in biology as part of his pre-medical track.

Emerson thanked her parents for supporting her so well she will soon begin her studies at the University of Texas at Austin for a major in business.

“It feels great to see my dream come true, all of my accomplishments come to life,” she said.

She also multi-tasked her schedule between academics and her involvement in National Honor Society, National Technical Honor Society, student council and the Hope Squad.

And she was a cheerleader.

“I was varsity cheerleader and I would have practices until very late,” she said. “I would have to stay up late sometimes and also was spending time with family and friends and trying to balance everything out.”