During our weekly meeting Monday, 9/9/2019, we honored Pedro Almeida, our Florida Atlantic University High School 2019-20 Rotary Scholar for September.  The FAU HS Rotary Scholar of the Month is selected by the FAU HS staff in recognition of character, ethics, morality, community service, and academic achievement. 
During our meeting Pedro told us about his dual enrollment studies with FAU HS and FAU as well as his community service involvement. He expects to graduate FAU HS in spring 2020 and hopes to continue at FAU to earn Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering in spring of 2021.  Pedro shared a recent frightening experience during this past summer when his family was notified that their family visa would require return to Brazil for reapplication and review.  Fortunately, after following all requirements and anxiously awaiting approval, the visa was renewed and they were able to return to continue his education plan.
Expressing his gratitude and demonstrating his regard for the honor of being selected to participate in the FAU HS program, Pedro maintains his high academic status while participating in soccer team, Academic Games team, Commissioner's Academic Challenge, Math Ambassadors, and other extra-curricular clubs.  He and his teams won local and state championships, and he had an opportunity to present to NASA astronauts. 
Serving his school as well as his community, Pedro has volunteered hundreds of hours helping to clean beaches, tutoring students, assisting teachers with grading, raising funds for charitable causes, and helping to lead church worship services. Still he finds time for social activities, even decorating for holiday events. Pedro was accompanied by his parents Luciana and Joao Almeida (at his left and right side), his brother Henrique, and a friend from Sao Jose Dos Campos Brazil Cristina Porto. 
The FAU HS Staff including our Honorary Member and Interact Advisor Robin Barkes, Academic Coordinator Kendra Palumbo, Director/Principal Sherry Bees, and Assistant Principal Christine Rich, also helped celebrate recognition of Pedro's accomplishments.  Director/Principal Sherry Bees was excited to announce the recent notification of Pedro's selection as National Merit Semifinalist.  
Semifinalists are designated on a state representational basis and represent the top 0.5% percent of the state’s senior students.  This is a significant accomplishment, especially because he began attending English speaking schools in 2013 as a middle school student, having spent prior years in his native country Brazil.
Club Secretary Jerry Leitherer is the sponsor for the September 2019 FAU HS Rotary Scholar and he expressed his delight in being available as a mentor to witness Pedro's future success in engineering.  Rotary Scholars Chair Sam Khazem provided a brief description of the project appealing for additional sponsors and joined club President Elect Fred Licata providing the award certificate and announcing the spring Gala, when cash awards will be distributed for all eight scholars for the year.  Congratulations Pedro Almeida!