Meet our Student
Perla Velez de Enriquez
Don’t tell Perla Enriquez that you’re too old, too busy, or not smart enough to earn a high school diploma after dropping out of high school.
“Don’t be afraid, just go,” she said. “If I can do it, anybody can do it.”
Enriquez is 35. She earned her diploma from MiraCosta College’s Adult High School Program on May 16.
Enriquez dropped out of school in Mexico when she was 16 for economic reasons and she never really thought of returning. That changed ago after she and her husband moved 13 years ago from Morelia, in the Mexican state of Michoacán, to the Los Angeles suburb of Torrance, where her husband quickly found work as an electrical engineer for Anchor Audio. The couple bought a house and were raising two daughters, now 12 and 8. But their lives changed when Anchor Audio moved to Carlsbad. The Enriquez family followed the work south.
Enriquez said she was at the MiraCosta College’s Community Learning Center in Oceanside a couple years ago to check into its classes that help immigrants become citizens. That’s when she learned about MiraCosta College’s High School Diploma Program.
She enrolled 18 months ago.
“They were so helpful,” she said. “They gave me an opportunity to see life in a different way.”
Now Enriquez is planning to earn an associate’s degree in accounting from MiraCosta College. “Later, maybe I can go to university.”
She’s not the only one in her family getting a higher education. Her husband is taking courses at both MiraCosta College and Cal State San Marcos en route to earning a bachelor’s degree in business administration.
“I really love school,” Enriquez said. “It’s wonderful to be taking classes and learning again.”