Paola has recently completed her courses and internship and SHE IS A DOCTOR!!!! From cleaning houses to Pediatric Dental Surgeon.
Congratulations to Paola, her family and to Team Paola.
The letter below is from Paola:
Hi everyone Beautiful blessings to all of you.
Of all the letters that I have written this one is getting complicated, because I haven't started and I'm already nostalgic.
If you could really see my heart you would see how grateful I am.
In this letter I remember all my life both school and everyday. I see that girl who, together with her family, came to sell her things in the bazaar to have money.
I see that girl going to sleep worried because she did not have the copies they asked for at school.
The one who had to do extra homework for her classmates in order to earn money and be able to buy school things.
She sold popsicles at school and felt embarrassed about it, I did.
Crying to heaven I asked God to allow me to be someone in life ...
I thought that being a professional was in dreams that were not going to come true.
Until you arrived, and made it possible for me to go to sleep without worrying that I would not have money to make my copies because I woke up and had it.
I remember that when the scholarship arrived, the first thing I did was thank the heavens for having listened to me and then buying a pack of markers that I wanted so much.
I have so much to thank each one of you for every bit that you put into my academic training.
I will not have enough life to thank you. You have changed my whole life. Thanks to this scholarship program in my house there are two professionals. Before, there were two girls who cleaned houses and sold things at the market. The only thing I ask of God is that he bless each of you greatly every day of your lives.
Thank you for having adopted me, for believing in me and for staying until the end of this beautiful journey through the university.♥ ️
Thank you, because during these years I never again worried about being afraid. Thanks a lot .. I don't want to say goodbye because I can't forget so many people who were my angels here on earth. So it's not a goodbye ...
I have the news that the hospital has hired me and my contract will be renewed every two months. I'm happy because not everyone can access opportunities like this when they finish. From now on my life will start as a professional and every day will be a new opportunity to reach a new goal .
I am happy because despite suffering from a heart condition, I have finished a degree and you were there. I believe that we all come with a mission here on earth. I believe that one of your missions was to help me train as a professional, to be called Dr. Paola.
Thank you very much to all of you and wherever you are, and although some of you I have not met in person, I send you thousands of blessings, hugs and my smile of happiness ...
Congratulations are in order for Alejandra who was our first university student in the program. 👏 2008 was when I started sponsoring Alejandra. She still keeps in touch with me 13 years later. That’s what this program is about, becoming part of the students education and often times of their life.￼ She is just starting a new job back teaching kindergarten in Cancun.￼ Alejandro took the initiative to take some courses last year that certifies her to be able to teach anywhere in Q. Roo.￼
The first time I met Conchi, she was a shy 8 year old and her older sister, Nelsy, was a student in the Scholarship Program. "You're going to be in the program when you are old enough", I told Conchi. She smiled.
As soon as she was in high school, Conchi was brought into the program. A career in Healthcare had always interested her and she even volunteered with the Red Cross during high school. Conchi's grades were excellent and it was no surprise that she was ready to pursue a Nursing degree after high school graduation.
Conchi continued her success during her university experience. She moved to Valladolid to attend University and she matured and gained confidence. Her grades were excellent and she received commendations and a special internship opportunity in Merida for her hard work. After graduation, in the midst of the Covid pandemic, Conchi moved to the village of Tizimin for her year long internship, often working 12 hour night shifts.
Now that her internship is coming to an end, Conchi will return to her family in Isla Mujeres temporarily, and wait for her professional title to be issued. After that, she says she wants to study a specialty in surgical or intensive therapy in Merida and work at any job that will help fund that goal. When she is finishes the specialty training, Conchi wants to join the Mexican Armed Forces. She explains that the specialty training will help her get accepted into the Armed Forces for a Nursing job and also be an asset to her career in general.
I'm so incredibly proud of Conchi for her achievements and dedication, for her bravery even in tough times and for the kind, compassionate and extraordinary young woman that she has become. I believe that Conchi will succeed in any endeavor and make the world a better place. I hope she always calls me 'Second Mom'. - Jana
"To my Padrinos (Godparents) of the Scholarship Program: Because of your support and dedication, this very important day for me has arrived. For your wise advice that you taught me on the road of life, for your efforts and sacrifices to ensure my future, for helping me finish my professional career, that represents the best of inheritances. Yesterday your root was my root and your courage gave me courage. For all of yesterday, I lovingly dedicate my entire tomorrow to you." - Conchi
Marisa graduated in 2019, Oct/Nov with a degree in physical therapy.
“To My Godparents. Knowing that there will never be a way to thank you, after a lifetime of struggle, sacrifice and effort, today I end one more stage in my life. I appreciate the confidence you have placed in me, the support you gave me through my achievements and setbacks, and the strength that you have given me throughout my life, so that this moment finally arrived. Thanks to God and to you, who have guided my steps, I have reached this long-awaited goal for my personal improvement."
Another student graduating soon! Conchi is finishing her internship and getting her professional nursing degree. This has been many years coming! Congratulations Conchi!!
"To my Padrinos of the Scholarship Program: Because of your support and dedication, this very important day for me has arrived. For your wise advice that you taught me on the road of life, for your efforts and sacrifices to ensure my future, for helping me finish my professional career, that represents the best of inheritances. Yesterday your root was my root and your courage gave me courage. For all of yesterday, I lovingly dedicate my entire tomorrow to you."
In the picture below, taken in 2019, 5 students have since graduated, with degrees in physical therapy, business administration, computer engineering, nursing and law! They have come from near impossible financial constraints to professional degree.
We hope you will want to make this very personal connection with an Isla student. It will change your life!
Maggie Washa firstname.lastname@example.org
Jana Epperson email@example.com
Jackie Conlon firstname.lastname@example.org
Hello from the Isla Scholarship Program,
All is well as we transition, graduating two more students and taking on two new ones. It is always a busy time for us administrators of the Scholarship Program. We are very proud to have graduated Miguel with a law degree from the university in Merida. Paola will be finishing her dental internships next month, when she will be called Dr. Paola and be able to practice dentistry. We are so proud of both these young adults and all that they have worked so hard to accomplish!
Now we have chosen two new students who are beginning their scholarships with us. Both started their studies without financial help and soon realized they would have to drop out unless help came from someplace. (In Mexico, once a student starts out in an academic program, they must finish it without taking a break. If they suspend their studies for whatever reason, they lose all earned credits and must start completely over again. This makes it impossible to take a break to earn enough to finish their university education.) And this is where our Scholarship Program can come in and help.
I would like to present these two students, with the hope that you might be interested in helping sponsor them. We form a 'team' for each student and the monthly support from these teams keeps the student in school. Sponsors commit to as little as $30/month up to $100/mo or more to help their student. In return the students keep a good GPA and write a letter to their team of sponsors every month. If/when you are on Isla, you will get to meet with your student and get to know them personally! It is a wonderful intercultural exchange as families meet families and a young adult gets an education they could only dream about. We hope you keep reading and choose a student!
👩🏻💻Tamara came to us in October of last year asking for financial help. She lives here on Isla Mujeres and goes to school in Cancun, studying graphic design. When the pandemic hit, her family became unable to continue supporting her because both parents lost their employment. She was able to find a very part time job but it wasn't enough to pay her expenses. She continued going to school even as she began going into debt, to get all the education she could and she hoped for a miracle so she could continue somehow. But she was facing the possibility of having to give up her dream when the University would not let her register for fall classes unless she began payments on past tuition due. She started a go-fund-me type page as she desperately looked for any way to stay in school. And she found us. We liked her strength, perseverance and big dreams. When asked what her dream for her future is, she said: "I want to be able to finish my University studies, to be able to travel to foreign places and explore new ideas and to be able to create and learn more about design. I want to have my own brand and my own business and create and sell my professional services as a graphic designer."
She has a GPA of 8.5 and is fluent in English! (This is a sign she is not afraid to fearlessly take chances, make mistakes and persevere when she has a goal.) We are proud to add Tamara to our scholarship program and hope to add a handful of new sponsors to her team. You will be well rewarded!