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Meet Valentino K.: PART FOUR: Culmination of My Summer Experience

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As the end of summer approached, I still had one thing left on my agenda. I had the opportunity to intern with a phenomenal individual who has helped develop me into the resilient teenager I am today. That person is my mentor. My mentor is the Honorable Judge Rodolfo Ruiz. He oversees the civil and criminal cases in Miami Beach, and is the youngest judge in the state of Florida. This is the second year I have had the opportunity to intern in the legal profession. Despite, the diminutive amount of time I had to intern this summer, it was definitely a spectacularly unique experience. I was able to collaborate with law school students, observe court proceedings for insurance claims, accompany my mentor to civil trials, and much more! This only strengthened my desire to become a lawyer.

This summer, we focused on two major things in chambers which were college applications and ACT/SAT prep. I worked tirelessly on test prep and refreshed my recollection on virtually everything. The ACT/SAT prep courses are invaluable for forthcoming tests. At times I didn’t want to constantly study but, my mentor came through as he always does and encouraged me to continue. Judge Ruiz is an incredible person. Prior to him becoming my mentor, I wasn’t such a great student. I would perform terribly in certain subjects, and I didn’t know what what would happen to me after high school. Then, one day I was introduced to Judge Ruiz by the judge who oversees my Dependency case, and the wonderful institution of Educate Tomorrow subsequently initiated our Mentor-Mentee connection!

Since I started working with Judge Ruiz, my life has changed forever. My grades improved and subsequently, my overall GPA increased exponentially. I am now more involved in extracurricular activities, and work diligently at everything I do. I even read more and started to become a prolific writer. My mentor not only guides and motivates me, but is also preparing me to obtain my ultimate goal in life, to become a judge. He definitely has had a significant impact on my life and I appreciate everything he does for me.

One thing I must say is that this has been the most enthralling and life changing summer I have ever had, and I will forever remember my experiences vividly.

I just concluded the first week of school of my senior year – which will be a crucial time for me. This year will help me determine what I will do for post-secondary education. I was recently elected Student Government President of Hialeah High School for the 2014-2015 school year. I was astonished by the results, but I must not forget that this is a pivotal position which must not be taken for granted. I have future endeavors and major duties that are forthcoming. I realize the magnitude and responsibility of this role as I have positioned myself to make the necessary changes at HHS. I plan on implementing programs that will have a perpetual effect after my term as president has ended. One of my main projects is a Mentor-Mentee program. I was inspired by Educate Tomorrow to make this happen. This will reform hundreds of student’s perspectives on education forever. This program will have a positive effect on HHS and the community at large. But I can’t only focus on the school.  Throughout the school year, I will do my best to acquire the best grades possible. I will not let “senioritis” hinder me from succeeding and prevent me from being able to attend the college of my choice. This will be a fun year for me as I will soon be able to discover where I will spend the next four years of my life!

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