MCALLEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Parents of McAllen Independent School District got a warm welcome at their home from the Superintendent, J.A. Gonzalez, honoring their child for becoming the valedictorian at their high schools. 

Robert and Cynthia Medrano’s daughter Janine is this year McAllen Memorial High School’s valedictorian, this accomplishment brought tears to her father’s eyes. 

“I guess the realization that they work so hard, and they do this and you’re happy for them and that’s the most any parent could want from their own child is for them to be successful and to do better then what we did and I can see that from her,” said Robert. 

He along with his wife pointed out their daughter’s accomplishment as it wasn’t easy for her to accomplish this goal. 

“Starting at Gonzalez, she was in the reading club, she was in choir, she moved on to middle school volleyball, she did a little bit of softball, she participated in several organizations which are girl scouts, national honor society, student council, etc.” said both her parents. 

Cynthia said she taught both of her daughters Janine and her young sister that success comes in more ways than one.

“It’s not about getting A’s all the time, it’s just about trying your best to work hard and being a good person,” said Cynthia. 

Janine plans to study neuroscience at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.). Meanwhile, McAllen High School’s valedictorian, Hayden Beck will study the same at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. 

“It feels great like I said my wife and I just do everything we can to support all of our kids rather it be sports,  academics,  wanting to be a doctor because Hayden wants to be a doctor; we do everything we can to support them in what they want to do in life,” said Lowell Beck, Hayden’s father. 

Hayden’s mother, Stephanie Beck says her son is a triplet and all three will graduate from McAllen high school. However, Hayden is following in his older brother’s footsteps by not only attending Vanderbilt with him but also becoming valedictorian. 

“The fact that Hayden has his older brother Calvin who he has admired and was valedictorian in 2017, did help him and made him realize he can do that too if he puts in the hard work,” said Stephanie. 

However, Hayden’s father said it was a surprise for his son to become valedictorian after he slipped into the second place in his class and had to work just as hard to be number one again. 


“The thing about Hayden was he knew he was in second place, he wasn’t not in first place anymore.  I told him ‘well now that you slipped from first which I think happened a year and a half ago. You can just relax a little bit, take your foot off the gas, play more golf and enjoy your senior year,” said Lowell. 

But he goes on to say how Hayden did the exact opposite of what he suggested and was determined to make his dream a reality. 

“Fortunately, he did ignore me and he kept his foot on the gas and we were surprised a couple weeks ago when we found out he did go from number 2 to number 1 and became valedictorian.” Lowell goes on to say, “so I’m glad he didn’t listen to me and now Hayden is valedictorian, and we couldn’t be prouder,” 

The gifts were also given to the parents of Kiron Ang at Rowe high school and Stephanie Reyna at Achieve high school who are their schools’ valedictorians. 

Picture of Kiron Ang courtesy of McAllen ISD
Picture of Stephanie Reyna
courtesy of McAllen ISD

Congratulations to the students and their families.