Destination: San Clemente
Destination sessions are the ultimate senior portrait experience. It's fun, unique and all about you. Choose a day trip destination like, San Clemente, Laguna, downtown LA, Palm Springs..you get the idea. Multiple locations. Wardrobe changes. Make up artist to travel with us. I'll be your paparazzi for the day. Your destination photo session also includes an entry into the Seniors Ignite National Model Competition.
This session was in San Clemente with Seniors Ignite National Model Finalist, Jennifer Barillas. Jennifer is a senior at Helix Charter High School. She came to the US from Guatemala when she in elementary school, quickly assimilating to life as an American. Not only is she beautiful, but she is smart and selfless. I call her the accidental beauty queen. She entered the Miss La Mesa beauty contest last year on a whim. And you guessed it, she won!
Jennifer has a constant excitement to promote the wellbeing of her community through any means necessary. From historian, to secretary, and later, president of Key Club - she was the official chair of the Annual Walk-A-Thon to promote, Project Eliminate, a UNICEF project to support the wellbeing of mothers and their children whom suffer from neonatal tetanus. Subsequently, they were able to save thousands of lives in third world countries through their $5,000 contribution!
Jennifer created The Gold Coast Initiative, a philanthropic book drive that helps orphans in San Diego County and schools in Guatemala receive novels to help boost children’s confidence in their reading capabilities and promote education. Jennifer said, "This program has allowed me to grow and give back to children who resemble me; because, at a primary school, the power of education and its opportunities is practically tangible in the air. Children like myself, who entered speaking a foreign language, begin to learn English or their native tongue, the gift of reading is taught, the fundamentals of mathematics are introduced, the complexity of history is broken down, and the importance of science is presented. This country values the development of knowledge and grants us the opportunity of receiving an education - no matter the social or economic levels we are in. Because of the opportunities I have been presented, I find myself attempting my best to grant others the possibility of receiving an equal chance of achieving their dreams and allowing them reach for their own horizons."
Through the People to People Student Ambassador Program, a cultural exchange, initiated by President Dwight Eisenhower to promote diplomacy through understanding Jennifer was able go on a trip across Europe. Through People to People shetraveled with other students to the historic countries of Italy, France, and Spain. In this program, she was an American diplomat who would speak to European politicians regarding political science. This trip made her more determined to continue her ambition of creating a positive change in the world through her actions as a global citizen.
Just when you think that this high school senior can't be anymore amazing, she did all of these things while helping her mother fight and win her battle with breast cancer. Jennifer's mom needed an advocate, a translator and a caregiver through her treatments. Jennifer was all of these. Beauty truly does begin on the inside and it shines through Jennifer.