COS: Martha Gaytan

Outside+of+school%2C+Gaytan+enjoys+volunteering+at+her+friend%27s+church+and+at+the+Broward+County+Animal+Shelter.+

Jasmine Morales

Outside of school, Gaytan enjoys volunteering at her friend's church and at the Broward County Animal Shelter.

Karen Portillo, Staff Writer

Martha Gaytan is a senior who will soon be attending Florida International University to major in psychology. The AICE diploma is awarded to students who have passed seven AICE exams in the span of three years. Gaytan is just one of the students who has recently received her AICE diploma as a result of her perseverance and dedication to the program and its classes. “I’m really proud of myself for earning the diploma because there were times when I thought I wasn’t going to receive it. I felt this way because AICE International and AICE Marine were difficult classes, but I managed to do it and now I get to see my hard work pay off. This diploma will allow me to attend FIU without having to worry about funds and instead, it will help me further my education,” revealed Gaytan.

Before the seniors leave Santaluces after senior checkout, Martha agreed that the school has positively impacted her life into the person she is today. “I like the diversity that this school has to offer. I’ve made a lot of friends from different backgrounds and I love the AICE program,” admitted Gaytan.

Born in Mexico, Martha’s culture is an important aspect of her life. She admits that being a Latina in the AICE program made her feel out of place at some points, but she is grateful for the diversity the program is beginning to expand into. “Being Mexican has imposed some obstacles for me because in the AICE program there are very few people of color and even fewer people who come from immigrant backgrounds and speak Spanish. It can be hard relating to them because we’re from two different worlds. Aside from that, I always stay true to my Mexican culture. I get to experience the opportunities given to me that others may not be provided with,” said Gaytan.

With graduation right around the corner, Martha is ready to for the various upcoming events she has been waiting for her since her freshman year. “I’m really looking forward to Gradbash and prom. Ever since I was little, I’ve dreamed about prom and what I was going to wear. I’m ready to live the experience.”

As a senior who has learned from her mistakes and achieved her goals, Martha provides the following advice for the freshmen class, “Take high school seriously from the beginning so you can relax your senior year.”