Florida Teen with HPE Receives Award

Families for HoPE is so proud to celebrate the achievements of 16 year-old Joshua Howard from St. Petersburg, Florida.

Joshua was selected by St. Petersburg College to receive the Dr. Vilma Fernandez-Zalupski Latino Academic Excellence Award for 2019-2020.  This prestigious award recognizes students in grades 10 through 12 with a grade point average of 3.0 or above.  Joshua received this award in appreciation of his outstanding work and to encourage his continued academic growth and success.

In 1979, Dr. Vilma Fernandez-Zalupski was the first woman in Florida to be appointed a community college provost.  She directed SPC’s Clearwater Campus for nearly 16 years before retiring in January 1995.

Describing her son as very lovable and friendly, Joshua’s mother, Leslie Camacho, shared that Joshua is quite independent, and even though he uses a wheelchair, “that doesn’t stop him from anything. He’s amazing!”

When Joshua isn’t focused on his school work, he loves listening to reggaetón music and playing football and basketball on the Xbox.  Residing in Florida, Joshua and his family are in close proximity to several Florida theme parks where Joshua fearlessly rides any and all rollercoasters.

Joshua will be recognized for his award in a virtual ceremony hosted by St. Petersburg College to be held on Monday, October 19.  Way to go, Joshua!

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