Twenty outstanding Latino academic scholars from the Everett and Chelsea public middle schools were honored during a pre-game ceremony at Fenway Park by El Mundo Boston and the Boston Red Sox, as the 21st season of the Latino Youth Recognition Day (LYRD) program were kicked off on Tuesday, April 19th. “The event is designed to recognize the hard work put in by Latino public school students who are, undoubtedly, the future of America”, explains Alberto Vasalllo, III, CEO of El Mundo Boston and founder of the two-decade long LYRD program. The program, launched in 1995, has honored over 1500 middle-schoolers with a unique moment in front of a sold out Fenway Park as the youngsters are handed their awards by Red Sox star players.
“I’ve been participating every year that I have been with the team and it’s great to see their faces when we give them their certificate“, explained David “Big Papi” Ortíz, who did the honors, alongside first baseman Hanley Ramírez. Students were also treated to meet and greets with prominent Latino leaders. Uri Berenguer, Red Sox Spanish radio broadcaster joined the students and City of Boston Chief of Health and Human Services Felix G. Arroyo as well as Giselle Sterling, City of Boston Commissioner of Veterans Services, who threw out the Ceremonial First Pitch.
“Wow! That’s the only way to describe this event. Kudos to the students, their families and all the partners who make this unbelievable day happen”, said Arroyo.
There are actually three ceremonies each season with different public school departments from across the Commonwealth providing the names of the selected students. On this night, students from the Wright Science and Tech Academy, Clark and Browne schools In Chelsea were honored as well as honorees from the Lafayette, Parlin, Keverian and English schools in Everett.
The next Latino Youth Recognition days are slated for Tuesday May 10th (Boston public schools) and June 20th, honoring scholars from the Lawrence public schools. 2016 LYRD partners are Western Union, Comcast, Bank of America, TJX Companies and Stop & Shop.