From high school to the pro’s

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Through the Qwest Leadership Challenge, she met Devney Preuss in the Suns’ Partnership Activation department and thought about her when it came time to pick a place to fulfill her graduation requirement of 20 hours of job shadowing. Clendaniel plans to major in advertising in college.

“I love sports,” says the Cienega High School student-athlete, “and this was the first thing I thought of because I could be around it and involved in the activity, and maybe consider it as a career option.”

Clendaniel’s involvement in the Leadership Challenge also made it easier for Preuss to accept the idea of a ‘job shadow’. “I’m not sure I would have volunteered to do this with just anyone,” she admits, “but I knew Paula and the kind of person she was. It turned out to be fun, as well as an assist to her graduation program.”

The
four-year varsity basketball player completed 40 hours of community service to
fulfill her requirements for the Qwest Leadership Challenge. Her efforts and
commitment earned for Cienega a $250 contribution on behalf of Qwest and
co-sponsor Phoenix Suns. She then became eligible for one of the $5,000
scholarships from Qwest and the Suns.

The 5’9” Clendaniel is primarily a shooting guard
for the Bobcats but, thanks to her height, also gets some playing time as a
forward. She earned the Scholar Athlete Award as a sophomore and was a 1st team
All Region and 2nd team All
City
selection last year.
Cienega, located in Vail, plays in the 4A Kino region.
 

She
says it took “about a month” to complete the 40 hours of community service. “I
kind of had to work it in among the sports (she also plays volleyball).” Her
schedule also includes time she spends tutoring math after school and on
Saturdays.

“My
coach presented the opportunity to me, probably because I’ve been the team
captain for the past two years and she knows how interested I am in college
ball – and this is just a little something extra I can put on my resume.

“It
was often difficult working it into my schedule, but I enjoy working with
students, so it was a personal bonus to be able to complete the Challenge.”

Would
she recommend the Challenge to others this year?

“Definitely,”
she says. “It always helps for the future as you try to reach your goals… and it
makes you feel better about yourself.”