As any person involved in Notre Dame ACE Academies can tell you, the schools' goals are twofold: College and Heaven. Notre Dame ACE Academies board member Sylvia Rodriguez highlights this with everyone she meets: "I tell them that we are all in this for our children, to make it a better world for them by preparing them for College and Heaven."
Sylvia Rodriguez is a walking advertisement for the value of Catholic schools. Not only is she a parish representative on the Notre Dame ACE Academies board; not only is she a Catholic school parent; Mrs. Rodriguez also heads up Madrinas y Padrinos, "a group of wonderful people who help recruit families to our schools who may not realize that it is possible for our children to attend these schools," she explains.
Says Notre Dame ACE Academies associate director Andie Cisneros, "Sylvia has done awesome things since she took over the position, recruiting new madrinas and padrinos and coordinating their efforts. They speak at masses at local parishes, CCD classes and parent meetings, and even stand outside grocery stores handing out flyers and talking to parents about the schools. She's totally committed and a force to be reckoned with in the best possible way."
"I love the Madrinas program," Mrs. Rodriguez says, "because it opens up many doors of opportunity for children and their families. When I am out giving literature about ACE schools to potential families and see the look on their faces when they hear that their children can attend because we offer tuition assistance...I feel I make a difference, especially when families show up and register at one of our schools."
The highlight for her in this work, she says, is what it offers children in terms of faith formation and the pursuit of higher education, so they can "go out and achieve their hearts' desires and become great people in society." Great people in society--like Sylvia Rodriguez!