Reagan Senior Student Enjoys Experiences
By Amy Morgan
Wrigley Rudnick exudes enthusiasm. The Ronald Reagan High School senior student loves everything about being a Rattler. Her vibrant smile and outgoing personality make her a peer favorite – as evidenced by the student body selecting her as a senior princess on the 2022 Homecoming Court.
Wrigley especially loves cheering for the Rattlers. Her older brother, Zenin, played football for Reagan, and Wrigley supported him from the stands. She enjoys participating in sports herself — she’s been part of Reagan’s Special Olympics track, basketball and bowling teams every year. Wrigley looks forward to track meets and bowling tournaments as they allow her more opportunity to mingle with others. She’s especially fond of basketball coach and PE teacher John Hirst, who, “Goes out of his way to let her know how special he thinks she is,” said her father, Dennis Rudnick. “There are a lot of great people over there,” he added. She also enjoys helping with the school’s garden and interacting with her PAL mentors. “Wrigley’s so proud to be a member of Reagan,” Dennis added.
The Northeast Independent School District has been a second family to Wrigley. Dennis has been with the district 29 years, coaching almost every boys’ sport offered. He’s now Assistant Director at the Academy of Creative Education (ACE) after spending six years at MacArthur High School. Wrigley’s mother, Tracey, teaches health at Nimitz and Ed White Middle Schools. The two met in 1998 while coaching at Robert E. Lee High School and married in 2000. Dennis credits the loyalty and value of the educational system at NEISD as a reason for their tenure. “The layers of support from Central Office have been incredible,” Dennis said. “We knew this was where we wanted to make our career and raise our children.”
Wrigley has benefitted from NEISD’s ALE support ever since beginning school at Wilderness Oak. She’s particularly close with Ms. Carolyn Bull, who has helped Wrigley be successful at Reagan. While Wrigley always loved to draw, she learned how to hone her skill in a Reagan art class taught by Ms. Karen Fox. In fact, her colored pencil drawing of the Reagan Rattler mascot was selected to grace the cover of a cookbook of favorite recipes recently produced by Reagan’s ALE students under the direction of Ms. Denise Caywood. The cookbook was featured on the NEISD website and social media posts.
Wrigley hopes to pursue further education in art, perhaps obtaining a degree from one of the Alamo Community Colleges. Community Bible Church (CBC) offers Wrigley another outlet for social connection. She’s part of the AXCESS group for special needs teens and adults. A NEISD teacher volunteers to teach the Bible classes in a small group environment tailored to the participants. Wrigley also loves dressing up and dancing at CBC’s Tim Tebow annual Night to Shine Prom in February hosted by the church.
Wrigley is considering whether she wants to attend NEISD’s Transitional School or stay at her beloved home campus in the 18 and Beyond program next year. Either way, she will continue to develop the life skills learned at Reagan that will enable her successful future.