Spruce High School

Dakari Butler

Students and Families: CLICK HERE to connect with Ms. Butler!

Dakari Butler is more than excited to serve her second year as an ASP College Advisor at H. Grady Spruce High School!

Dakari grew up in the DFW metroplex. In high school, she was not provided with a non-profit committed to aiding in the college application process like ASP. Without additional help, the application process was overwhelming at times. Despite this, Dakari graduated from the University of North Texas with a Bachelor’s in Fine Arts.

Although she is grateful she was able to apply independently, she does not want the next generations of scholars to do the same. Especially 1st generation low-income students, who are most in need. Looking back on her time applying for college, she understands that she would have had more access to opportunities if she just had additional guidance. Dakari is dedicated to ensuring that students are aware of every option and opportunity available to them.

Ivette Colunga

Students and Families: CLICK HERE to connect with Ms. Colunga!

Ms. Colunga is a first generation graduate from Texas State University in San Marcos. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Bilingual Education with a Spanish minor. The most memorable experience she had of college was studying abroad during the summer to further her study in the Castilian Spanish Language and Literature in Valladolid, Spain. She attributes her success to graduating college debt-free thanks to local and university scholarships that were obtained when she invested her time in completing community service hours independently and with organizations such as the Boys & Girls Club, Helping Hands and the local Rotary/Interact Club throughout High School. She found her identity and built relationships throughout volunteering in her community. Her most inspirational teachers were her AP English, Art, Spanish and AVID teachers who encouraged her to apply to scholarships. In college, she continued being an active member and held leadership positions within her multicultural sorority that completed annual projects such as Adopt-a-Highway, Indigenous Cultural Institute’s Sacred Springs Powwow, and Susan G. Komen of Austin.

As a former educator, with four years of bilingual teaching experience, Ms. Colunga hopes to motivate students to reach their full potential and become lifelong learners.  In a rapidly growing and diverse society, it is important to inspire our students to be proud of their identity and cultural experiences. When she is not reading essays she enjoys fitness, traveling internationally or visiting the nearest art museum.

Esmeralda Trevino

Students and Families: CLICK HERE to connect with Ms. Trevino!

Esmeralda Trevino is an ASP advisor at H.Grady Spruce High School. She is a born and raised native Houstonian, who was part of the first graduating class at her high school. She is a first-generation student who attended Sewanee : The University of South in Sewanee, Tennessee, where she majored in International and Global Studies with a minor in Education. 

Before becoming a college advisor, she taught second grade reading and math in Phoenix, Arizona through Teach for America for three years. During the first two years of teaching, she also received her Masters in Elementary Education from Arizona State University. As someone who is Mexican-American, Esmeralda was able to create strong relationships with students and families because of her background and love for education. Esmeralda also enjoyed talking to her young students about her college experience and how the work they are doing everyday will help them be prepared in the foreseeable future since she worked at a K-12 school. Esmeralda enjoyed applying to college as a high school senior and is very passionate to learn more about different colleges that she can get other students excited about. She is also excited to learn more about the SAT and getting students ready to take it or re-take it to earn a higher score. 

When Esmeralda isn’t thinking about college, she enjoys hanging out with her mom and dogs, going to concerts, and exploring unique dining experiences or spots in the city.