Chancellor Recognizes 2007 Graduates Who Have Overcome Extraordinary Odds To Receive A Diploma
Walton High School graduate Keila Matos receives diploma while battling lupus
Keila Matos was diagnosed with lupus when she was nine years old. The disease left her weak, and at times she received home instruction when she was not able to attend school. She is currently in dialysis three times a week for her failing kidneys. However, she returned to Walton High School in the Bronx for her senior year and has flourished, despite her physical limitations. Keila will graduate on time with her class, and plans to attend Hostos Community College in the fall. “This has been a great year,” Keila said. “I haven’t felt that sick. I’m really going to miss this school, my teachers and my guidance counselor.” Keila plans to study Computer Science. Her teachers say her determination has been an inspiration and motivation to the entire school community.
Fannie Lou Hamer High School graduate Yulisa Ramirez first in family to receive diploma
19-year-old Yulisa Ramirez learned to grow up at an early age. When she was five, her parents were deported to the Dominican Republic and Yulisa ended up in foster care in Massachusetts. Eventually, she returned to the Bronx to live with her sister. For the past four years, she has attended Fannie Lou Hamer High School while holding down a full-time job. Of the ten children in her family, Yulisa is the only one to receive a high school diploma. “To be able to say that I got my diploma is amazing,” Yulisa said. “It took a lot of work and a lot of effort, but I did it. I am very lucky.”
Yulisa will attend City College in the fall where she plans to study accounting or psychology.
New York City Schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein will congratulate Keila, Yulisa and other students who’ve beaten the odds to graduate at a ceremony at Department of Education Headquarters.#