Maria Duenas, a Biloxi High School junior, has been selected to attend the Secondary School Program of the 2008 Harvard Summer School as a residential student.
Duenas, who was born in Peru and learned to speak English after emigrating to Biloxi with her parents at the end of her sixth grade year, will experience life as a Harvard College freshmen, according to William J. Hofinger, director of the Secondary School Program at Harvard, including “the excitement of arriving and checking in, first meetings with your proctor and roomates, the drama of Harvard Square and the beauty of the Charles River.”
Duenas “learned English by trying very hard, studying every night and translating vocabulary constantly,” according to Biloxi High Principal Pamela Manners., “She is fluent now, a mere 5 years later, and in fact, scored in the Advanced category on her eighth grade Mississippi Curriculum Tests, received a composite score of 26 on her ACT taken recently. She is a credit to the Biloxi Schools and her own determination.”
Duenas is considering applying for colleges both in America and in Peru.