A colorful awards ceremony honored two G. Holmes Braddock Senior High School students, both receiving $1,000 “First Generation” scholarships on Oct. 18.
Jose Diaz and Joceline Wheelock “overcame incredible odds” to graduate in the top 3 percent of their class, noted Libby Perez, Council president of #7232 LULAC (League of United Latin American Citizens).
The award name is significant because it indicates that the recipients are the first of a family to attain college entrance, Perez explained, adding that LULAC, founded in 1929, “is the oldest and most respected Hispanic civil rights organization in the USA.”
Joceline took dual enrollment classes during summers, volunteered many hours in day care and pre-school assistance, and has been an active member of National Honor Society, Social Studies Honor Society and Art Club while facing economic struggles, noted Isis Castro, scholarship chair, who presented the awards.
Jose, despite being involved in a life threatening car accident during his sophomore year that required months of hospi- talization, recovered to excel in his studies, become Senior Class president and a member of several honor societies, she noted.
The two students, both of whom plan to become physicians, were honored by having G. Holmes Braddock, Miami-Dade District’s longest-serving school board member, present to add his congratulations.
A costumed Panamanian dance group demonstrating folkloric dances provided a colorful visual touch to the program.
“The event was a labor of love that not only celebrated the efforts of these remarkable students but also our community’s collective desire to help our youth succeed,” Perez said “We are hoping to make this an annual event and next year assist four students by multiplying the number of scholarships we will present with each passing year.”