The Outreach and Technical Assistance Network for Adult Educators (OTAN) recently announced the recognition of MiraCosta College instructional aide Rocio “Rosy” Flores for the California Adult Education Students Succeed program. Eight individuals from across California were selected to represent the success stories of adult education students.
The selection criteria for nominees called for adults with significant life responsibilities who made a positive contribution to the community as an adult education student, established and met life goals as a result of attending an adult education program, improved the life situation of self/others as a result of learning experiences, and overcome difficult circumstances in order to pursue adult learning experiences.
Krista Warren, MiraCosta College part-time faculty, nominated Flores because “she has been able to give back and instills in ESL students that their goals for an education, a better job, community integration, and career study are possible because she has accomplished all these goals herself.” Warren expands “She is a compassionate and inspiring model to all our students, as well as our faculty colleagues and anyone who is lucky enough to work, learn and teach with Rocio.”
At age 11, seeking a higher quality of life, Flores emigrated from Mexico with her family. Upon her father being accepted into an amnesty program, North San Diego County became the permanent home for Flores. During her adolescence, Flores dropped out of middle school to care for her family as her mother battled with cancer and father with alcoholism. Shortly after, Flores found herself becoming a mother at the age of 14 while in a mentally and physically abusive relationship. To protect herself and two young sons, she escaped to a women’s shelter in Vista where she was encouraged to learn English through MiraCosta College’s free noncredit courses.
Flores not only learned the English language but proceeded to complete her high school diploma followed by two associate degrees from MiraCosta College. In addition to earning a bachelor’s degree from California State University, San Marcos, she is currently working on her master’s degree. Flores continues to serve the MiraCosta College community by way of being an instructional aid for the noncredit program working with the disabled student population. In appreciation of all the support she receives, she gives back by regularly volunteering with the MiraCosta Food Pantry, encouraging her English as a Second Language (ESLC) students to get the food they need and volunteers her time in the language lab at the college, supporting credit students in conversational Spanish.
“I’ve been through a lot. If you have the passion to do something, nothing is going to stop you.
I had the passion to get an education as this was the only way to change my life for me and my children,” explains Flores. “It was a passion to go to school. Education has become my passion.”
The award was presented to Flores during a meeting at the Community Learning Center on Wednesday, August 14, 2019.
OTAN is dedicated to leading California adult education in the integration of technology into the educational process, ultimately empowering learners to meet their academic, employment and civic goals.