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May 15, 2017 – Miami, Florida – Congratulations to Coral Reef Senior High School’s graduating senior, Reese Ecklund, in the Engineering Academy.  Reese has been named as a recipient of a competitive National Naval ROTC Scholarship for the University of Michigan. This is a four year scholarship worth $214,884.

Photo: Reese EcklundReese


May 16, 2017 – Miami, Florida – Congratulations to Coral Reef Senior High School’s graduating senior, Adrian Perez, as he was nominated by Ms. Gloria Martin, Guidance Counselor for the Legal and Public Affairs Academy and school personnel to receive the Kendall Federation of Homeowner Associations (KFHA) Operation Turnaround 2017 Scholarship. KFHA celebrates the success of students who employ winning strategies in their lives that place them on a pathway to academic and social success.  They provide awards, events, mentoring services, college financial-planning information and scholarships to deserving students from the greater Kendall area.

Adrian will attend Miami Dade College in the Fall and plans to major in Business Administration. Adrian was selected because he has exhibited the qualities of resiliency and perseverance through extremely challenging circumstances.  Honoring his father’s dying wish to have his son sent to the United States, to have the opportunity for a better life, Adrian’s mother sent him at age six to Miami, to live with relatives he never met.  Not only was this a new country – with a new family, but he was mourning the loss of his father and missing his mother.  It took time to learn English and adapt to his new surroundings; which did not occur without missteps along the way.  However, with the help of caring teachers and administrators, over time Adrian began to make the adjustment.  He is dependable, respectful, trustworthy, and has performed academically while maintaining a part-time job.  He never complains and the result is that through establishing goals and visions and sheer hard work, he will be the first in his family to graduate from high school. In addition, his mother has not been able to travel to the United States to see her son, and will likely not attend his graduation.

Since 1983, the Kendall Federation Operation Turnaround Scholarship Initiative has sponsored the Operation Turnaround Awards Students’ Luncheon held at Fire Tower.  As a Miami-Dade Public Schools “Dade Partner,” Operation Turnaround honors students from over 43 public schools within the greater Kendall Community every year.

Operation Turnaround is run with a 100% volunteer staff.  High school honorees, plus scholarships and grants for graduating seniors who are headed for college or other post-secondary institutions.

In addition to the scholarship, Adrian received a laptop computer, an internship and a job with Hotwire Communications.  Hotwire Communications is one of the nation’s leading fiber optics telecommunications providers specializing in multi-family communities. Hotwire Communications employs cutting-edge fiber-to-the-home technology in which fiber optic cable serves as the backbone for all of the community’s communications services. Because of this brand-new communication infrastructure, residents at every community they service will enjoy the benefits of a completely upgraded system.

Adrian Perez

Photo: Adrian Perez

May 10, 2017 – Miami, Florida – Each year, 15 Four-Year Florida Prepaid University Tuition Scholarships are awarded to graduating high school students. Coral Reef Senior High School is proud to announce that four graduating seniors are recipients of The Hubert O. Sibley (HOS) Four-Year Florida Prepaid Tuition Scholarship began in 1995.  Since then, South Florida Educational Federal Credit Union has helped hundreds of students attend college.

Congratulations to The 2017 Hubert O. Sibley 4 Year Florida Prepaid University Tuition Scholarship Winners, their academy, and the university they will be attending: Carlos O. Concepcion – Health Sciences; – Florida International University Amanda Grullon – Legal and Public Affairs – University of Central Florida; Brandon Rojas – Business and Finance – Florida International University; and Dianne Miranda – Visual & Performing Arts – Chorus – Florida International University.

As an educational Credit Union, they are proud to assist members by sending some of them to college. The education they receive helps them embark on their chosen profession and provides them with tools they can use throughout life.

To be eligible, seniors or their parent/legal guardian must have had a South Florida Educational Federal Credit Union (SFEFCU) account for at least one year prior to completing the scholarship application. Also, the student applicant must have a SFEFCU primary savings account (a savings account in their own name) by the application deadline.

Credit Union Winners 2017

Photo left to right: Dianne Miranda, Brandon Rojas, and Carlos Concepcion



National Letters of Intent

May 5, 2017 – Miami, Florida – Congratulations to the Class of 2017 student athletes that have signed National Letters of Intent:

  • Samantha Smith, Visual & Performing Arts – Wrestling – Lindenwood University – Belville, Illinois
  • Montana Ligman, Visual & Performing Arts -Soccer- University of Rhode Island, South Kingstown, Rhode Island
  • Brent Holcombe, Agriscience – Basketball – Loyola University Maryland, Baltimore, Maryland
  • Chloe Bedard Khalid, International Baccalaureate – Swimming – Northeastern, Boston, Massachusetts
  • Abigail Chai-Onn, Visual & Performing Arts – Golf – Sienna College, Loudonville, New York
  • Nicholas Korovich, Health Sciences – Baseball – Stratford College, Danville, Virginia
  • Natasha Dacosta, Visual & Performing Arts -Volleyball – Florida National University, Hialeah, Florida

The NCAA manages the daily operations of the National Letter of Intent (NLI) program while the Collegiate Commissioners Association (CCA) provides governance oversight of the program. Started in 1964 with seven conferences and eight independent institutions, the program now includes 650 Division I and Division II participating institutions.

The NLI is a voluntary program with regard to both institutions and student-athletes. No prospective student-athlete or parent is required to sign the NLI and no institution is required to join the program.

The NLI is a binding agreement between a prospective student-athlete and an NLI member institution.

  • A prospective student-athlete agrees to attend the institution full-time for one academic year (two semesters or three quarters).
  • The institution agrees to provide athletics financial aid for one academic year (two semesters or three quarters).

The penalty for not fulfilling the NLI agreement: A student-athlete has to serve one year in residence (full-time, two semesters or three quarters) at the next NLI member institution and lose one season of competition in all sports.

An important provision of the NLI program is a recruiting prohibition applied after a prospective student-athlete signs the NLI. This prohibition requires member institutions to cease recruitment of a prospective student-athlete once an NLI is signed with another institution.

National Letter of Intent 2017Photo attached – left to right: Samantha Smith, Montana Ligman, Brent Holcombe, Nicholas Korovich, and Natasha Dacosta.  Not pictured: Chloe Bedard Khalid and Abigail Chai-Onn


Salute to Education, Inc. Winners

Miami, FloridaApril 19, 2017 – Through a unique partnership with the community in South Florida, the Miami-Dade and Broward County Ford and Lincoln Dealers and Ford Motor Company have awarded over $3.7 million in scholarships to more than 4,300 deserving public and private high school seniors in both counties.

Salute to Education, Inc., established in 1994, is a non-profit organization funded through dealership contributions and corporate support from Ford Motor Company. In addition, the program receives support from a Scholarship Committee composed of Ford and Lincoln dealers and business, educational and civic leaders who take time out of their schedules to judge the scholarship applications.  Community volunteer participation has been an integral part of the campaign’s success.

Congratulations to Juan Garcia  and Anderson Leal as they each received the scholarship in the amount of $1,000 designated only for tuition and other educational at the college/university they will be attending. Juan will be attenFord Saluteding the University of Florida and Anderson will be attending Loyola University – New Orleans.

Scholarship applications are judged based on the following criteria: Community Involvement, Academic Achievement, Demonstrated Leadership, Quality of Character, Life Goals & Interests, Obstacles Overcome, and Meaningful Objectives Achieved.  A special thank you to Ms. Lou Gillman, CAP Advisor at Coral Reef Senior High School as she announced Juan and Anderson, their category and the respective academy – Anderson Leal – ARTS: Performing Arts and Visual Arts  – Drama and Juan Garcia, SCIENCES: Natural Science – International Baccalaureate.

Photo attached: Juan Garcia and Anderson Leal

March 14, 20 1 4 – New York New York – Congratulations to two Coral Reef Senior High School graduating seniors, Nuria Dolphin and Samantha Smith, as they were recognized by The Alliance for You ng Artists & Writers as 2017 Scholastic Art & Writing Award National  Medalists. In addition, the school received recognition for leadership, faculty’s efforts, and the school’s dedication to education in the creative arts.  Nuria received a Silver Medal and Samantha received a Silver Medal with Distinction.

National Medalists represent the top I % of submissions to the 2017 Scholastic Awards. This year students submitted 18,800 works of art and writing. About 17,000 submissions received Gold Keys – the top honor at the regional level. Only 2,740 Medals were awarded at the national level!

Hundreds of thousands of young people have been recognized through the Awards since the program began in 1923. Among t hem are some of America’s most respected artistic and literary talents.  Richard Avedon, Truman Capote, Lena Dunham. Bernard Malamud, Joyce Maynard, Joyce Carol Oates, Philip Pearlstein, Sylvia Plath, Robert Redford, and Andy Warhol all earned Scholastic Awards as high school students.

All National Medalists are   invited to attend the annual National Events in New York City, with the National Ceremony taking place at Carnegie Hall and a series of student showcase events. Art work and writing from National Medalists will also be featured in the National Exhibition at Parsons School of Design at The New School and Pratt Institute’s Pratt Manhattan Gallery. The exhibition will be on display J u ne 2 through June 1 2.

March 3, 2017 – Ocala, Florida – Florida Public Service Association (FPSA) members of the Legal and Public Affairs Academy at Coral Reef Senior High School are showing their awards earned during the State Competition. The Honor Guard:  Parmie Dean, Brandon Naranjo, Jordyn Turner, Jayla Burton, Sarah Borrero, Malka Trujillo, and Danieska Lopez and Parliamentary Procedures Team:  Hannah Llende, Jane Perez, Sebastian Ranut, Damon Veras, Emily Olson, Angelica Almanza, and Benjamin Caserta) took First Place.  Angelica Almanza received First Place in CPR, Damon Veras took First Place in Extemporaneous Speaking and Dina Thomas earned a $500.00 scholarship to Johnson and Wales for her Third Place finish in Extemporaneous Opening Statement. Lionel Esperance earned First Place in Obstacle Course and Annabelle Colon won Third Place in Obstacle Course. William Garcia earned Third Place in Prepared SpeakingMax Tamayo, Megan Lichtman, Christian DeLao and Annabelle Colon earned Third Place in Building Search. Thomas Hodgins, Joshua Defreitas and William Garcia earned First Place for the Prison Project.  Other winners include:  Danieska Lopez, Victoria Briz, Daniela Rodriquez, Andres Vargas, Karl Pridemore, Michael Guerra, Dylan Heimer, Annabelle Colon, Malka Trujillo, Angela Olave, Nicole Ramirez, Natalie Boix, Vickie Avalo, and Gaby Hernandez. The team is led by Ms. Tina Cushnie, outstanding Academy Teacher.

Founded in 1990 as the Florida Association of Public Service Students (FAPSS), the Florida Public Service Association, Inc. (FPSA) is a public service driven career technical student organization (CTSO) recognized by the Florida Department of Education (FDOE).

As a CTSO, FPSA provides coherent and rigorous content aligned with challenging academic standards and relevant technical knowledge and skills needed to prepare for further Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) education and careers in the criminal justice, law studies, firefighting, public administration and teaching assisting through career development events.

As an association, FPSA provide students with academic, general employability, problem-solving, technical and occupation-specific skills to meet the demands for a career in public service.

Photo below: Winners with Ms. Marinka Stuvel, Lead Teacher and Mr. Thomas Ennis, Principal



2017 National Merit Finalists

Evanston, Illinois – March 2, 2017 – Seven Coral Reef Senior High School students were among National Merit® Scholarship Corporation’s highest scoring participants in the SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®) and are now Finalists in the 2017 National Merit Scholarship Competition. These academically talented high school seniors are: These academically talented high school seniors are: Mahmoud Fahmy, Leila Halley-Wright, Gianni LaVecchia, and Timothy Whiddon from the International Baccalaureate Academy; Daniel Crair from the Health Sciences Academy;  and Dario Amador-Lage and Kyle Dickson from the Visual and Performing Arts Academy.

Beginning in March and continuing to mid-June, NMSC notifies approximately 7,400 Finalists at their home addresses that they have been selected to receive a Merit Scholarship® award. Merit Scholarship awards are of three types:

  • National Merit® $2500 Scholarships

Every Finalist competes for these single payment scholarships, which are awarded on a state-representational basis. Winners are selected without consideration of family financial circumstances, college choice, or major and career plans.

  • Corporate-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards

Corporate sponsors designate their awards for children of their employees or members, for residents of a community where a company has operations, or for Finalists with career plans the sponsor wishes to encourage. These scholarships may either be renewable for four years of undergraduate study or one-time awards.

  • College-sponsored Merit Scholarship awards

Officials of each sponsor college select winners of their awards from Finalists who have been accepted for admission and have informed NMSC by the published deadlines that the sponsor college or university is their first choice. These awards are renewable for up to four years of undergraduate study. The published deadlines for reporting a sponsor college as first choice can be viewed on page 3 of the Requirements and Instructions for Semifinalists in the 2017 National Merit® Scholarship Program.

Merit Scholarship awards are supported by some 440 independent sponsors and by NMSC’s own funds. Sponsor organizations include corporations and businesses, company foundations, professional associations, and colleges and universities.

Photo attached left to right: Daniel Crair; Mr. Thomas Ennis, Principal; Dario, Amador-Lage, Timothy Whiddon, Leila Halley-Wright, Mahmoud Fahmy, Kyle Dickson, and Gianni LaVecchia.


February 28, 2017 – Orlando, Florida – Congratulations to Coral Reef Senior High School’s, William Gilmore.  William is a graduating senior in the Engineering Technology Academy.  He was selected as an official winner of the 2017 Disney Dreamers Academy Essay Contest!  The prize package includes an invitation to attend Disney Dreamers Academy with Steve Harvey and ESSENCE® magazine.  The Academy will be held at the Walt Disney World® Resort near Orlando, Florida,  March 9-12, 2017.  It is the Disney Dreamers Academy intent to teach the 100+ high school students how to Dream BIG and Discover the Possibilities.  The weekend will include: educational sessions, guest speakers, and hands-on learning opportunities throughout the living classroom of the Walt Disney World® Resort.  As discovered over the last nine years of this program, it can be life-changing for the students and continues to be awe-inspiring for the Cast.  A Dreamer Commencement Ceremony is included as part of the Dreamer and Chaperone event itinerary on Sunday, March 12, 2017.

William’s Dreamers Profile includes: “I am a senior at Coral Reef Senior High School in Miami, Florida. I am enrolled in the Gifted and Engineering Magnet programs. My many interests include Art, Engineering and African Studies. My dream is to become a film director, screenwriter, producer, and publish my own line of comic books featuring Black superheroes. I am the founder of the Pre-Engineering Society 4 Youth web family on Facebook. I hold to the belief that creating more art will lead to the development of young leaders.”


William Gilmore

Scholastic Art Awards 2017

February 8, 2017 – Miami, Florida – The Scholastic Art Awards are the nation’s longest-running and most prestigious scholarship and recognition initiatives for creative teens. This program gives thousands of students throughout America the opportunity to broaden their creative horizons while earning local and national recognition. The objective is to foster the confidence of young artists and give them the opportunity to be recognized for their creative achievements by the world at large. Founded in 1923 by Scholastic Inc., the nation’s leading publisher of children’s book and educational materials, the awards have been administered since 1992 by the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, a not-for-profit corporation.

The Scholastic Art Awards Exhibition showcases select artwork created by middle school and high school students from the United States, Canada, U.S. Territories, and U.S. – sponsored schools abroad.  Entry materials reach 12 million students in 99% of America’s schools and attract more than 250,000 entries each year.  Miami-Dade County Public Schools is the regional sponsor of The Awards.  At the conclusion of the Miami-Dade County Regional Exposition, one of 81 across the country, top award-winning artworks are forwarded to the national program in New York City.  Each work is reviewed by a panel of art professionals for originality, technical skill and the emergence of personal voice or vision.  National awardees are honored at the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards ceremony at Carnegie Hall in New York City.  Award-winning artwork is installed in galleries in New York, and at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. adjacent to the White House.

Participants, supported by their visual arts teachers and other community mentors, create and submit their best works of art. This year the jurors reviewed approximately 2000 individual artwork over four days. Coral Reef Senior High School is pleased to announce the following recipients awards and their categories:

Gold Key Awards Artists: Nuria Dolphin (Art Portfolio) and Samantha Smith (Art Portfolio).  These artists were presented with a gold key pin and a certificate on the regional level.  Their artworks are forwarded to New York City for national judging works.

Silver Key Award Artists: Leira Padron (Drawing & Illustration) and Brianna Marshall (Printmaking).  These artists are presented the silver key pin and a certificate on the regional level.

The following students were recognized as Honorable Mention: Eva Bibas (Digital Art); Marissa Diaz (Painting); Alyssa Goosby (Printmaking); Leira Padron (Drawing & Illustration); and Caitlyn Ridgeway (Drawing & Illustration); and Gabriella Torres (Painting).

The Awards have fostered creativity and talent and feature a notable list of alumni recipients including: Richard Avedon, Mel Bochner, Truman Capote, Frances Farmer, Red Grooms, Stephen King, Bernard Malamud, Joyce Maynard, Duane Michals, Joyce Carol Oates, Philip Pearlstein, Robert Redford and Andy Warhol.

Photo attached left to right: Mr. Thomas Ennis, Principal; Leira Padron, Eva Bibas, Marissa Diaz, Caitlyn Ridgeway, Brianna Marshall, Gabriella Torres, Samantha Smith, Alyssa Goosby, and Nuria Dolphin.scholastic-arts-2017