Peak Education scholar Cina Costa graduated from the highly rigorous International Baccalaureate program at Palmer High School in May 2018, then earned both a prestigious Kane Family Foundation full tuition scholarship, and a Moniker Foundation scholarship to continue her studies at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Her interests in cultural anthropology led her to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation during the Fall 2018 where, as a member of Tipi Raisers, she helped to rebuild homes severely damaged in summer storms (pictured left). Her motivation was to spend time learning from “marginalized peoples discussing their ways of life, stories and hardships.” More recently, she has shadowed with a Board Certified Behavioral Analyst associated with the Family Support Center for Autism and is considering focusing her studies principally on psychology and philosophy and pursuing a master’s degree in applied behavioral analysis. Her dream, she says, “is to one day open clinics in impoverished parts of the world to provide more people with the benefits of Applied Behavioral Analysis.”
Peak Education scholar Daizha Brown was among the first 10 Sierra graduates to earn her associate’s degree in general studies from Pikes Peak Community College at the same time they received their high school diplomas in May 2018. This meant she entered her undergraduate studies at Colorado State University Fort Collins with 60 college credits. She plans to pursue a career in law, and in the spring of 2019 she was named an Associate Senator of the Associated Students of Colorado State University (ASCSU). In that role, she is a representative of the Black African American Cultural Center, ensuring the voices of students of color are heard in the work of the ASCSU, which allocates funding and provides other support for clubs, organizations and initiatives on campus. Of her experiences at CSU so far, she says, “I’ve learned that staying committed and consistent will bring great rewards in life.”
Peak Education scholar Alejandra Pedraza was the 2014 Valedictorian at Harrison High School, before pursuing her studies in sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder as a Daniels Fund Scholar, a program which ensured all of her education-related expenses in her undergraduate work would be covered. Alejandra initially enrolled in the Chemistry Honors program, but ultimately majored in environment sciences, a decision that led her to study abroad in Latin American focusing on third world development initiatives. Alejandra graduated with honors from CU in 2018 and is now in her second year as a member of the Peace Corps, working in Mexico.