New SCHS Vice Principal Nelson Hori is determined to make the best of distance learning


Courtesy of Nelson Hori

Prior to working at SCHS, Hori worked as a teacher at Cabrillo Middle School for 15 years and as a vice principal for the last three.

SCHS welcomes new Vice Principal of Attendance, Technology and Discipline, Nelson Hori. Formerly, Hori was a science and math teacher at Cabrillo Middle School for 15 years and vice principal for the last three. Thus far, Hori is happy with his move to SCHS.

“I am really enjoying being a part of SCHS, and the staff here has been very welcoming and very nurturing,” Hori said. “They’ve accepted me with open arms, and I really appreciate that.”

Hori studied marine biology at San Jose State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Business. He also holds a Multiple Subject Teaching Credential with Authorization in Science and an Administrative Services Credential. Out of college, Hori had a six-month internship working in public relations only to find that it was not his passion. When a friend working in education suggested Hori substitute teach, he realized it was a great feeling to have a positive impact on students.

“In college, you make a lot of big decisions. And that’s where my thought process was at the time: ‘How do I know I really want to do this?’” Hori said. “So I turned to business. But in the long run, your passion and your dreams always start to creep up and get back to you, so I went back to teaching because I really enjoyed it.”

Hori has a fondness for nature and an ambition for research, originating from his love for his childhood home in Hilo, Hawaii. Though he misses Hawaii, Hori has adapted and grown attached to California.

“I was born in Hawaii, and moving here to California in fourth grade, I remember being so sad,” Hori said. “I guess the lesson is that things happen for a reason. I think my life is better because I’m here, because I had to step away from that life.”

Hori, however, has experienced struggles due to the ongoing pandemic and CZU Lighting Complex Fire. More than half of the houses within Hori’s community burned down in the fires, though his house is still standing. Hori and his family were forced to evacuate their home on the second day of school.

“The sky was orange. It was intense, and at that point, we started to see it glowing red,” Hori said. “We ended up leaving and spent the first week in a trailer at a friend’s house and then started staying at different hotels.”

Despite the challenges, Hori continues to pursue new interests. He has recently taken a liking to playing the guitar and singing. Hori also enjoys swimming and teaching surfing, sharing his love of the ocean with his two sons, 12-year-old Jackson and 10-year-old Maxwell.

“I envisioned myself working in research, studying our planet, studying our oceans,” Hori said. “I love surfing. I love being near the ocean and trying to get into the waters as much as I can.”

Hori described himself as a positive and upbeat character who delights in all foods, specifically ramen and rice. He is a lover of dogs, especially Jessie, his nine-year-old lab and pitbull mix. He also has 14 chickens, one of which is named Stalker for her tendency to follow Hori’s sons around.

Hori is looking forward to going back to in-person learning and misses face-to-face conversations with people. Nevertheless, he is determined to make the best of virtual schooling.

“Be a person of high integrity, challenge yourself and be grateful for the things you’re able to do in life,” Hori said. “I think that goes a long way. Try something new, take a risk. That’s how you learn from life.”