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Michael Avila

Michael Jose Avila recently graduated from California Virtual Academy as class Valedictorian. He plans on attending California State University, San Bernardino this fall and major in computer science. He grew up with sister cities and did not realize the uniqueness of his entire family's involvement in their local Sister City program. After 12 years of experiencing sister cities from the sidelines, Michael became more involved by asking how he could help with small things and gaining slightly larger responsibilities along the way. In 2019, he was one of four student ambassadors from San Bernardino, California that spent one month in Tachikawa, Tokyo, Japan. Following his one-month stay with his host family in Japan, his family hosted a Japanese student in California. Both he and his host sister each gained the other's family as their own. This adventure of a lifetime spurred him to continue his involvement. Now he helps maintain his committee's website, assists with fundraising, supports the language instructor in teaching Japanese to the newly selected students of the program, and prepares them for their journey of a lifetime.