Students pay tribute to their heroes during Hispanic Heritage Essay Contest Ceremony

Students pay tribute to their heroes during Hispanic Heritage Essay Contest Ceremony

Oct. 21, 2020 – Sixteen years ago, Jose Ascencion Monteagudo-Avila moved from Mexico to the United States with his wife and son and little money.

Sometimes earning less than $50 a week, Monteagudo-Avila decided to take a risk by selling his truck and using his life savings to venture into a new career….

So began the essay from Jose Monteagudo Jr. in which the Stanton College Prep junior paid tribute to his father.

Monteagudo — who went on to talk about how his father now owns a successful ceiling texture contracting business — was one of  three student-winners of the DCPS Hispanic Heritage Essay contest.

Each of the winners was recognized in a special ceremony on Monday. Their essays all highlighted a Hispanic-American who played a significant role in their life.

Alfred DuPont seventh-grader, Flor Larisa Ruiz Castro, wrote her essay entirely in Spanish about the life of Flor Ivonne Castro Hernandez. She talked about how Hernandez is a guerrera, a warrior, who has taught her to face all of her fears and to never give up. Castro said she follows her daily advice that life may give you obstacles but only you set your limitations. “La vida te pondrá obstáculos pero los limites los pones tú.”  

Biscayne fourth-grader, Naomi McDuffie, wrote about her role model, Yanira Cardona. In her essay, she mentioned how the Afro Latina organized multiple family events for the Hispanic community and inspired McDuffie to wear her own hair curly.

The students will also be highlighted at the upcoming School Board meeting on Nov. 9. Click on the links below to read each essay.

Jose Monteagudo

Flor Ruiz

Naomi McDuffie