While many college students are basking in the sun during summer break, there are some who use the opportunity to gain valuable experience and insight into the careers they are aspiring to pursue. You won’t find Palm Springs High grads Isabella and Sophia Castrodale hanging at the beach.

Break from College Offers Palm Springs High School Grads Career ExperienceThat’s because the twins, who graduated in 2015, are spending their break away from the books gaining experience related to what they hope to pursue in their future careers. Isabella, who will be a senior at UC Berkeley in the fall, is currently working for the Department of Justice, in Washington, D.C., learning first-hand about the country’s criminal justice system, especially as it relates to international matters. Given the confidential nature of her government work, she needed to hedge on the details on what her duties entail.

“I need to use discretion when I describe this internship, so I apologize for not sharing in greater detail,” wrote Isabella, who is studying both French and Rhetoric and plans to attend law school after her undergraduate graduation.

On her break, sister Sophia, who attends UC Davis and is studying animal science with a concentration in animal behavior, is spending her summer interning at the American Bear Association’s Vince Shute Wildlife Sanctuary in Minnesota. After graduation, she plans to pursue a career in animal husbandry and wildlife conservation. Sophia also interned at the Living Desert here in Palm Desert two summers ago.

“Sophia chose, with great enthusiasm, to join us at the American Bear Association and looks forward to understanding wild black bears as well as she can so that she can be a stronger advocate for them in the public,” read a social media post from the Vince Shute Wildlife Sanctuary. “In turn, she will be better equipped to help animals through conservation education.”

break

Tony’s graduation photo (the cap was tribute to his friend, Gus Luna, who had a brain tumor and passed away at the age of 22 this past spring.

The Castrodale sisters are not the only ones in the family who are hitting the ground running. Older brother Tony graduated from Cal State San Bernardino earlier this month, and his mom – Palm Springs Unified’s Arts Coordinator Louisa Castrodale — reports that he is planning to pursue a career in business and study for his real estate exam. A young man who has faced and overcome two brain surgeries, Louisa said that Tony’s doctor at Cedar-Sinai is amazed at what he has accomplished.

“Where many people don’t even finish high school, given his medical challenges, he has had the grit to continue onto college and graduate cum laude,” said Louisa adding that Tony was invited to join Beta Gamma Sigma, a fraternity for the top 10 percent of junior and senior business students.

Louisa couldn’t be more proud of her children and where their PSUSD educations have led them.

Break from College Offers Palm Springs High School Grads Career Experience“I am grateful for the passion and success my children are experiencing as they continue their educations and begin their professional lives,” said Louisa. “I would like to acknowledge the impact of the many fine teachers and administrators in PSUSD who helped us in this journey.”

Isabella echoes her mom’s sentiments.

“There was not a single teacher I had at Palm Springs High that wasn’t a thoughtful mentor and dedicated instructor,” wrote Isabella. “All in all, PSHS and PSUSD were great and offered a great foundation for our pursuits in college.”