Santa Rosa honors engineering teacher for World Teachers’ Day

District and high school administrators recognized Santa Rosa High School teacher Manuel Lopez on Oct. 2 in honor of 2020 World Teachers' Day. (Left to right) Yvette Reyes, SRHS College, Career and Military Readiness specialist; Annabelle Collins, SRHS Gear Up facilitator; Dr. Angela Gonzalez, Santa Rosa Independent School District superintendent; Manuel Lopez, SRHS engineering and robotics teacher; Rocio Ramos, SRHS principal; Marcy Cuevas, SRHS dean of instruction; Melissa Salinas, SRISD director of curriculum and instruction; and Antony Cantu, SRHS counselor. ManuelLopezBox photo: Santa Rosa High School engineering and robotics teacher Manuel Lopez goes through the special recognition gift box he received for 2020 World Teachers' Day.

SANTA ROSA — Santa Rosa Independent School District recognized teacher Manuel Lopez for 2020 World Teachers’ Day and surprised him with Whataburger gift box.

Lopez, the engineering and robotics teacher at Santa Rosa High School, was recognized for his untiring dedication and contribution to the district and students. In addition to his duties as a teacher, Lopez serves as the senior class sponsor, GreenPower USA sponsor, TSI testing team member, new teacher mentor, district drone pilot and district video producer.
Superintendent Dr. Angela Gonzalez said the executive team chose to recognize Lopez for his leadership qualities.

“Mr. Lopez is always willing to lend his time and talent to help the students and staff. He’s also been very helpful to the district, especially during this challenging time of COVID-19,” Gonzalez said. “We appreciate everything he does as a teacher and school leader.”

According to Thays Fernandes, marketing coordinator for Whataburger-Rio Grande Valley, Whataburger has been a close partner with SRISD for many years and was happy to give a gift box to a deserving teacher. The box contained Whataburger merchandise, such as tumblers, towels, condiments and gift cards.

“Whataburger wants to recognize teachers from our community who go above and beyond. Mr. Lopez is certainly one of them,” she said.

Lopez was pleasantly surprised by the recognition.

“I was still teaching a class over Zoom when I heard the knock at the door,” Lopez said. “For a moment I was concerned when I saw the superintendent, principal, counselor and other administrators standing at my door. When I opened the door and got a BIG congratulations with a Whataburger box, I knew everything was fine.”

Lopez, a McAllen native and resident, has worked for the district for nine years, and he does not plan to leave any time soon.