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We are truly fortunate to have partners like Flagler Credit Union who share our commitment to making our community a better place. Your dedication to philanthropy and community outreach is an inspiration to us all. 


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Congratulations to our HEROES Foundation Scholarship winners 2023

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In 21st-century America, it takes more than a high school diploma to open doors of opportunity. On May 18, 2023 the School District of Palm Beach County's Department of Adult and Community Education, celebrated a commencement, a beginning or a start for the GED or High school Equivalency Diploma graduates. This new chapter in their lives will allow them to reach their highest level of competency, enhance opportunities for employment, meet their obligations as citizens, and improve the quality of their life not only for themselves, but for their families. As someone who believes in lifelong learning, it is my hope that this is only the beginning of their education journey.


A sincere thank you to all our sponsors, donors, and everyone who supports our efforts with "Transforming Lives through Education." HEROES Foundation of America is making it possible for these graduates to achieve their dream careers.


Each of the the following students received a $2,000 scholarship to attend Palm Beach State College in the fall of 2023. Students were selected by the Scholarship Committee based on their qualities of persistence, perseverance and grit, along with a passion for learning and achieving their goals.

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Priscilla Kirchheimer has the skills and aptitude for a career in business administration.


" I saw my son struggling with school, especially math. I wanted to help him, but I lacked the knowledge and skills to do so. It was frustrating, but I refused to let this obstacle defeat me. I put in extra effort and dedication to help my son improve. Through my hard work, I helped him go from F's to to D's to becoming an A student. It was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life, and it showed me that my hard work and determination had paid off,"

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Carolina Gonzlez Cortes will be pursuing a career in mental health


"I am becoming the person I was meant to be. Obtaining my high school diploma has been an amazing accomplishment for me. And now, given this opportunity to apply for this scholarship is a dream come true. I always wanted to go to college and pursue a degree., but I never thought it could be possible. Thanks to this scholarship my dream may come true. I am so thankful for this unbelievable opportunity to continue my education."

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Brenda L. Mendoza plans to become a CPA. She's currently employed in Vecellio Management Services as a staff accountant.


" Receiving this scholarahip will help me get my CPA degree and will impact my life by enabling me to live the life I never had, being able to buy my own home, eventually own my own business and help others achieve their dreams."

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Hailli Mack wants to study medicine and become a doctor.


" I would be the first to graduate college with a bachelor's degree in my family. This scholarhip would heavily impact my family and my future self because it would give me the opportunity many of my family members didn't know about or couldn't receive....Since I went through so many medical needs and having many doctors take care of me, ...I dream about being able to do for other people what some of those really nice doctors did for me when I needed them most."

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Therese Arestil wants to study nursing


Therese came from Haiti in 2011 as a young widow with two small children, who she left behind with her mother to build a better life for her family. She enrolled in ESOL classes to learn English and by 2013 she knew enough English to get a job. She was hired by the School District's Transportation Department as a Bus Aid. Therese has been a dedicated employee for the School District for 10 years. In fact she has won the South Transportation Facility Bus Attendant award twice.


Life has not been easy for Therese. She worked full time for the District, and had additional part -time jobs while studying for the GED Test in the evenings at South Tech. She needed all these jobs to support her girls and her family still living in Haiti. It took her eight years to accomplish her goal of attaining a High School Equivalency Diploma, and she finally did it. Her dedication and unwavering perseverance has finally paid off. Therese is an example to all who work hard, and stay focused on achieving their goals.

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Amazing as she is teaching math to GED students at the Chuck Shaw Technical Center, Ms. Ines Sosa's strength is in the rapport and connection with her students. Whether they are highly motivated or struggling to pass the GED Test, she gives them the emotional support and guidance they need. to succeed.


Ms. Sosa has a strong passion for helping students and she has always gone above and beyond to prepare them for the test, assist them with college applications, or just listen to them. Students can always tell when teachers really care about them, and they flock to Ms. Sosa because of her genuine concern. She knows that young people learn best when their minds are engaged while their spirits are nurtured. I have personally and professionally known Ms. Sosa for more than 20 years, and she has always encouraged her students to reach their fullest academic potential while she boosts their self-esteem.

On behalf of all the GED students, thank you for making a difference, Ms. Sosa. 

South Technical Adult Education Academy recognized HEROES Foundation of America

for providing assistance, support and encouragement to GED students across the Palm Beach County Schools. It's a pleasure working with Ms. Hertz, a dedicated teacher

who works with her heart to help her GED students build a better life for themselves and their families. Thank you for encouraging your students to go beyond a GED.

L-R Superintendent, Michael J Burke, HEROESBoard member, Robin Johnson Blake, HEROES Founder and CEO Sandra Caruso, Assistant Principal, Eric Messmer, and GED teacher, Bonnie -Jo Hertz.

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Emily Manuel! 


We are so proud of your accomplishments.

Heroes are not born, they are made by overcoming life's challenges.

You are a real hero. 

Emily was one of our 2019 scholarship recipients and she recently sent us an update on how this scholarship has changed the trajectory of her life. 


Dearest Mrs. Caruso and HEROES Foundation Board Members,


I will forever be grateful for the HEROES Foundation Scholarship that has made a tremendous impact to my life. Sometimes I think back to my life the way it used to be, and I can’t believe that I graduated from Palm Beach State College, with a 4.0 GPA, had been on the Dean’s list every semester, got accepted into Phi Theta Kappa, a leadership role in Student Government, Pell Grant recipient and yes, I was accepted into a program at Harvard where I attended last summer. I'm currently studying civil engineering at the University of California while working as a realtor. All because HEROES Foundation gave me an opportunity. It all started with the Bridges to College and Careers Program at the Adult Education Center, where you, Mrs. Caruso, helped me not only see my full potential but also had faith in me when I could not recognize it in myself. And with your belief I have managed to overcome obstacles that were put in my path to stop me from achieving my dreams.


In today's job market, a college degree, or career certification is becoming more important. HEROES Foundation of America realizes that the GED, a high school equivalency test, opens doors to college, vocational school, or better job opportunities, but it can also provide higher salaries. In addition, it gives the graduates the respect they deserve, and the pride of achievement. People with diplomas make good role models to younger siblings, their children, and grandchildren which encourages them to stay in school (the circle of life). Our goal is to ensure that our students have the skills for passing the test, academic advising to help them identify a career pathway, financial and guiding support. Every GED student has the potential to be successful and will succeed with the help of HEROES Foundation of America.  


HEROES Foundation of America was formed to empower GED students enrolled in the School District of Palm Beach County. The foundation provides scholarships, GED Test vouchers, career counseling and other support services for student success. 


Our board of directors is compromised of educators, financiers, entrepreneurs, politicians and other non-profit organizations. We are very proud of the board's expertise and accomplishments within their respective profession who are committed to supporting the mission of HEROES Foundation of America by assisting our GED students to transform their lives through education.    



Currently, we 're accepting online applications from GED students, enrolled in Palm Beach County adult education programs or recent (within a year) graduates.   


low-skilled adults are: 


2 X more likely to be unemployed

3 X as likely to be in poverty          

  4 X as likely to be in poor health    ​​ 

   8 X as likely to be incarcerated       

By 2020, the American Action Forum projects that the United States will be short an estimated

 7.5 million

private sector workers across all skilled levels.  



65% of all jobs in 2020 will require some level of post-secondary education. 

Adult Education make communities safer too. Inmate participation in adult education reduced recidivism by 29%



In contrast, adults with a high school degree were more likely to work full time and average 20% higher earnings ($30,000) well above the poverty line for a family of 4. 


By 2018, 63% of all U.S. jobs will require education beyond high school. 


In a recent survey, 92% of business leaders thought that U.S. workers were not as skilled as they needed to be. Adult Education builds the skills of workers.

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