Two outstanding students from Miami Lakes -- Megan Casal and Juliana Maestri -- are recipients of scholarships awarded by The Graham Companies.
The company, which built the Town of Miami Lakes from its dairy farm, endow several education causes including this scholarship program for students who attend college or vocational school.
The scholarship program is also supported by the Town of Miami Lakes and its Education Advisory Board.
Recipients must be town residents and write essays, submit recommendations and share their transcripts.
Casal and Maestri each received $1,000. They achieved success despite setbacks to learning during the pandemic.
Casal, 18, graduated this year from Hialeah-Miami Lakes Senior High School.
While there she participated as an officer in many clubs and volunteered with the town’s annual Easter egg hunt and at the Miami Lakes Methodist Church’s Pumpkin Patch fundraising event.
She earned more than 230 service hours during her high school career, the school said.
Casal also earned an A in every course during all four years, whether honors, advanced or dual enrollment, and was named an AP Scholar with Honors, AP Scholar with Distinction and a member of the National Honor Society.
Casal plans to study architecture at the University of Florida.
Maestre, 18, graduated from Archbishop McCarthy High School.
She is also a Girl Scout, and earned the Gold Award for a program she created while president of the school’s BLISS Club (Beauty Lies in Sisters Serving).
Maestre enlisted volunteers for a peer-to-peer mentoring program for teens in foster care.
She created it in partnership with BiG Children’s Foundation in Fort Lauderdale. Called Glow from Within, it launched last November at a youth shelter.
Maestre accumulated more than 100 community service hours.
She was also a member of the National Honor Society; National English Honor Society; International Quill and Scroll honor society for journalists and participated in dance during grades K-12.
Maestre plans to major in education at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.
She hopes to become a teacher.