Carnival Foundation, in partnership with the Miami HEAT and Florida Prepaid College Foundation, presented 17 South Florida students with four-year college scholarships during halftime at last night’s HEAT game.

The students currently participate in the Carnival Scholarship & Mentoring Program, an innovative workplace program sponsored by Carnival and the Miami HEAT, in partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Miami that pairs a student with an employee mentor from Carnival. Prior to entering high school and participating in the Carnival Scholarship & Mentoring Program, the students attended the HEAT Academy, an after-school enrichment program for at-risk youth.

The 2017 scholarship recipients include:

  • Francesca Aguirre – MAST Academy (Mentor: Arlette Kim)
  • Angie Betancourt – Miami Senior High School (Mentor: Ashley Ruchty)
  • Nicole Cruz – Young Women’s Prep Academy (Mentor: Christine Arnholt)
  • Betchina Dezore – William H. Turner Technical Arts High School (Mentor: Nathalie Valaire)
  • Jeimee Garay – Young Women’s Prep Academy (Mentor: Milly Martin)
  • Esly Godoy – Charter High School of the Americas (Mentor: Leslie Pereda)
  • Yarie Godoy – Charter High School of the Americas (Mentor: Stacy Pallot-Schweky)
  • Evelin Guifarro – Young Women’s Prep Academy (Mentor: Martha DeZayas)
  • Kaywon Hanna – Booker T. Washington High School (Mentor: John Harshaw)
  • Medjie Jean-Francois – William H. Turner Technical Arts High School (Mentor: Aneisha Johnson)
  • Edward Leonard – New World School of the Arts (Mentor: Glenn Aprile)
  • Ashley Mendoza – iPreparatory Academy (Mentor: Vicky Blanch)
  • Yasney Mordan – Felix Varela Senior High School (Mentor: Melissa Wisecarver)
  • Jailyn Palma – Young Women’s Prep Academy (Mentor: Clarisa Stollenwerck)
  • Rey Prieto – Coral Gables Senior High School (Mentor: Arnie Perez)
  • Dmarcos Ramos – Mater Academy East Charter School (Mentor: Marcelo Freire)
  • Jamilee Yern – Miami Senior High School (Mentor: Ynelim Carrillo)

In addition to receiving the scholarship, students were presented with a new laptop computer to support their studies, as well as a backpack and a gift card from Perry Ellis.

The scholarships, purchased by Carnival Foundation, the charitable arm of Carnival Corporation & plc, were handed out at center court by Linda Coll, executive director of the Carnival Foundation, with a congratulatory handshake given to each student by Micky Arison, chairman of Carnival Corporation and managing general partner of the Miami HEAT.  Miami-Dade Superintendent of Schools Alberto Carvalho; founder of the Florida Prepaid College Foundation Stanley Tate and board member Senator Ron Silver; along with representatives from Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Miami and the HEAT, including President of Business Operations Eric Woolworth, were on hand to acknowledge the students, as well.

For the past 15 years, Carnival has purchased Project STARS scholarships from Florida Prepaid College Foundation, representing a collective value of more than $2.5 million. The Florida Prepaid College Foundation scholarship covers the cost of tuition for two years at a Florida college followed by two years at a Florida public university. This is the ninth year Carnival scholarship recipients have matriculated into college.

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