Northside senior Sofia Flores got a big surprise in class Tuesday morning when she was named the first-ever recipient of the HISD Superintendent and Board of Education Scholar Awards.
The scholarships, which will be distributed to one senior at every high school through next week, recognizes students who have exemplified great character and resilience.
HISD Interim Superintendent Grenita Lathan, with District I Trustee Elizabeth Santos, had the honor of presenting Sofia with an oversized $5,000 check. Lathan highlighted the importance of the scholarships and helping students who had overcome significant obstacles to pursue their dream of going to college.
“We want to help them in their endeavors as they embark on the next leg of their journey,” she said.
Sofia has flourished in her studies despite losing her younger brother, Josue Flores, who was killed as he was walking home from his school. Just days ago marked the two-year anniversary of his murder, which remains unsolved.
Sofia was her younger brother’s personal tutor, guiding him to academic success and nurturing his love of math and science. It was in her interactions with him that inspired her to go to the University of Texas and study education. She hopes to one day return to HISD as a teacher.
“I am actually honored to get this scholarship,” Sofia said. “Helping him inspired me to be a teacher, and everything I do, I do for him.”