Senovio and Johnny – A Menlo Legacy

Senovio Arellano, Menlo College's gardener extraordinaire, sits opposite a handsome young man and, with a twinkle in his dark eyes, nodding all the while, he proudly introduced his grandson, Jonathan Martinez, Menlo College sophomore. “I am very, very proud of my grandson, Johnny.” His beaming smile reflects a deep abiding affection and pride. “He has never been in trouble. He is a blessing. You know, at home he works and helps me with the vegetables, like zucchini and tomatoes.”

Senovio has worked at Menlo for thirty-two years. As he looks around the grounds, he says matter-of-factly, “I've planted every pretty flower you see here; every flower on the campus, I've put in myself.” He is a one-man beautification program, much to the delight of all who appreciate the lovely campus scenery. Every single day when Senovio gets up, he looks forward to coming to work at Menlo.

Johnny smiles too, because he knows all the stories that Senovio has told over the years, and he'll tell you that he came to Menlo College because of Senovio.

A Close Family

Since he was born, Johnny, his mom Francesca, grandparents Senovio and Christine have all lived together in Sunnyvale, so naturally Johnny has an extra special relationship with his grandparents. When he chose to attend Menlo last year, Johnny was familiar with the campus. He knew his grandfather was well-respected, so he followed Senovio's recommendation to take advantage of the great opportunities open to him at Menlo. Indeed, Johnny has formed his own close relationships on campus. He lives on campus now, returning to Sunnyvale frequently.

On November 6, Johnny and his classmates boarded a chartered bus to visit “Van Gogh, Gauguin, Cézanne and Beyond, Post-Impressionist Masterpieces from the Musée d'Orsay” at the de Young Museum in San Francisco. The field trip was part of a one-credit Impressionist art course taught in October and November by Professor Nick Bridger at Menlo College, showing the works of the early modern masters such as Vincent van Gogh, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Paul Gauguin, Les Nabis, Pierre Bonnard and édouard Vuillard. The de Young also happens to be the only museum in North America to host the exhibition.

Johnny is still considering his options for a major, but he does admit he's been drawn to technology and computers since he was four years old, especially video games. In the long term, he wants to have a good job and start a family. For now, he just wants to live in the moment.

To this, his grandfather again smiles and says encouragingly, “Keep up your good work!” The Menlo Legacy goes on.