SAN JUAN - Students and staff at the new PSJA Collegiate High School Program recently gathered to celebrate the unveiling of their brand-new student-designed campus logo on Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2018.

According to the school's Principal Mariza Saenz, her freshmen students first started designing the logo during Enrichment Camps in May. After several design entries, a logo was created from a combination of the top two submissions by students Carina Vajgert and Elias Rodriguez.

“We had so many entries to review,” shared Saenz of the process. “We are so excited to be making history and starting a tradition that’s going to last a lifetime.”

During the ceremony, the principal and students shared that new logo honors the traditional colors of all five PSJA ISD high schools while embracing what's to come in the future. The PSJA Collegiate High School Program opened this year with a 9th grade cohort and is expected to increase a grade level each year.

“It’s so exciting to know that I was part of designing our new logo,” said Carina Vajgert who plans to pursue an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice from South Texas College while attending PSJA Collegiate HS Program. “The design showcases how we come from different schools, but we are all part of the same family. This logo will be shared and used by many generations.”

According to Principal Saenz, it was important for students to incorporate the colors of their sister high schools as many of them will still be participating in extracurricular activities, such as fine arts and athletics, at their home campus. Colors reflected in their shield logo include maroon for PSJA Early College HS; black for PSJA North Early College HS; green for PSJA Memorial Early College HS; navy blue for PSJA Southwest Early College HS; and gold for PSJA T. Jefferson T-STEM Early College HS.

“We wanted to promote unity and showcase our PSJA Family,” Saenz said. “Our students felt that the logo needed to reflect that PSJA ISD is one, as the other high schools have been very supportive.”

In addition to carrying on the colors of all the PSJA ISD high schools, the principal shared the PSJA Collegiate High School Program will also be carrying more than 60 years of tradition and legacies as it will be permanently housed at what was once the original PSJA High School in San Juan until the late 90s.

“We’re going in not just as a high school, but we’ll be part of the district’s new PSJA College & University Center, set to officially open next Spring” said Saenz. “We’re excited to continue the legacy of providing academic excellence to our PSJA Families.”

With more students and parents interested in obtaining college hours, the new PSJA College & University Center will also house the PSJA Collegiate Academies, which are cohort based programs in various specific fields of study such as Business & Industry, STEM, Education, Health Services and Communications, to name a few. Through these Academies, students continue to attend their hom high school, but will travel to this new Center for designated hours for academy coursework.

Located in San Juan, the PSJA College & University Center will be the first of its kind. The revolutionary facility will allow more students to pursue a higher education while in high school without the worry of arranging transportation to South Texas College or the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. Thanks to the district's partnership with these two institutions, more students will be able to take college classes while in high school at a facility near their home.