A School Built on Pride and Equality


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On Monday, November 3, special guests State Representative Greg Harris and State Representative Cynthia Soto visited the Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos Puerto Rican High School to learn more about a special program that we have in place to support our students. Also in attendance were Jack Wuest, Executive Director of Alternative Schools Network (ASN), Marvin García, President of our school’s Board of Directors, Martrice Manuel, Program Director of ASN, and Juan Calderón from the Puerto Rican Cultural Center. Below, is the address given by Rosemary Clinton, one of our seniors, who spoke to the guests: “When I think of Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos High School, I think of more than just your everyday school. I think of hope, a second chance, and opportunities beyond your wildest dreams. I think of a school built on pride and equality, where we’re not just peers, but family. How many people can honestly wake-up to be greeted on afirst-name basis by their Principal, to feel as if, after everyone gave up on you, people you have just met picked up the pieces to help you succeed? I stand here today to explain to you how amazing my school really is.

With After School programs for EVERY subject, with teachers gladly waiting to help you, pushing you everyday to go a little bit farther and to never settle because you can achieve so much more. Dr. Campos High School wants nothing but for us to succeed. For example, this past summer I was sitting at home doing nothing. Out of the blue, Judy called (Judy Díaz-Rodríguez is our Dean of Students) and asked me what I had been doing. I explained to her my situation and how I had no summer job. Within a week, Judy set me up with a summer job working more than 30 hours every week. I worked at a doctor’s office where I gained experience working in the medical field. The experience gave me groundbreaking background knowledge on what the life of a doctor is really like. Not many teenagers my age are awarded this opportunity. For me to have the advantage of partaking in this was a blessing. So, when I think of my school, I can’t help but be grateful for the opportunity to be blessed with such amazing people in my life. When I walk across the stage, I know I will have all the tools I need to be successful. Without Dr. Campos High School, I would probably just be another DCFS statistic, an African-American high school dropout. But today I stand before you as a Senior, graduating early from high school, an Abayarde Scholar, a 17 year-old girl accepted into two colleges with many more to come. After June 6th, I will be an undergraduate student with a Major in Business and a Minor in Accounting, and later will go for my Master’s Degree. I’ll owe it all to Dr. Pedro Albizu Campos High School and staff.”

by Rosemary Clinton, Senior @ PACHS

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