Recent Coral Gables High graduate Monica Moreno was accepted to Fairfield University in Connecticut. She plans to study international business as well as new languages.
“I learned Chinese for three years and French for two years,” she said.
She studied Chinese at school, not only at Coral Gables but also at an International Baccalaureate school in New York.
“They asked us to choose between Chinese and Spanish and I chose Chinese because I thought it would be good later in life and it’s also an interesting language to learn, and I do like a challenge,” she said.
She moved to Miami five years ago so her family could be closer to relatives. She lives in the Brickell area, so she has spent many hours helping teachers at South Side Elementary. She would go on early release days to help students in math.
“It’s one of my best subjects,” she said. “I have a closer relationship with the math teacher so it’s easier for me to help out rather than the language arts teacher.”
She was introduced to South Side through her family.
“My cousins went there and my brother went to South Side,” Moreno said. Her mother doesn’t speak English so Moreno communicated with the teachers on behalf of her mom on matters dealing with her younger brother. Being the interpreter helped her develop relationships with the teachers at the school.
Her senior year at Gables, Moreno was vice president of Mu Alpha Theta. She didn’t attend math competitions because of transportation difficulties. She took Metrorail to a station near school and then either walked or took the trolley, which dropped her off a couple of blocks form school.
She also participated in the National Honor Society, the International Baccalaureate Honor Society and she was secretary of the Art Club.
“I do like art. My artistic abilities do not exist,” she said. “I love to go to art museums and stand there and look at the paintings.”
The art club painted murals at the school and worked on a mosaic that was a landscape of the Coral Gables community.
— Linda Rodriguez Bernfeld