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I just finished my second year of college so I am a future junior. I got one more year and I will be graduating college. In the past two years that I’ve been in college Select still finds ways to help me out. I am so thankful for the club and everyone that has helped me.” ANGEL GONZALEZ

Dear Fort Lauderdale Soccer Families,

A few years ago we decided to add another dimension to our travel soccer club by starting the Fort Lauderdale Select FC scholarship fund.  This fund was set up to support young Fort Lauderdale Select FC players who had the potential but not the means to attend college.

We focused on players who had been with the club for a long period of time and during that time demonstrated good character and determination.  We realized a lot of our players came from backgrounds where college had not been a consideration, that is until they started with our club.  We set up a system where we could encourage and mentor young players who had the potential to go into higher education.  This included providing them guidance, tutoring and college placement services.

One of the first players we identified was Angel Gonzalez. He played for the club for over 5 years and his development as a player, student and person was very gratifying to see.  He was struggling in school when he started with us and he had a below average GPA.  He worked hard both on the field and in the classroom and graduated with a 3.4GPA . He was the first person in his family to graduate from high school.

He showed the interest to attend college in 2016, a dream he would never had considered a few years before. We helped him get admission into a Division 3 college in New York called College of New Rochelle.  He attended his first year on a combination of financial aid, scholarships and donations from our soccer club.  He attended College of New Rochelle with a Fort Lauderdale Select FC teammate, Juan Vasquez who was also admitted with the same support from our club.  The boys had a great season and helped the team to a 13-3 record at the same time as maintaining good grades.

Their journey hit a road block when their coach was let go by the university and the program faltered.  Angel persevered and managed to earn a position on a Division 2 college in Massachusetts called American International University.  He once again had a good year on and off the field earning 3A’s and a C in his last semester there.  While it is very gratifying for our club to see him reach the halfway mark in his college career it is more satisfying to see the transformation in Angel as a person and also the effect it has had on his family.  He has two younger siblings who now play for Fort Lauderdale FC and both now have aspirations to follow in their older brother’s footsteps . His younger brother has improved his grades and enters his sophomore year in high school. He just represented our club on the 2003 Boys Florida State Team in the Olympic Development Program and was selected into the South Region team pool.

Angel is determined to make the best of his opportunity and is excited about the future as can be seen by his testimonial.

“I joined Select when I was a U14. That was my first time playing travel soccer, I was very nervous to join Select but that was the best decision I ever made and staying loyal to the beautiful club. Select not only gave me the opportunity to meet amazing people but it also gave me the chance do something I never thought I would do. Go to college, I am the first in my family to graduate high school, meaning I am the first one in my family to attend college. I am not just making my family proud but I am making my Select family proud. The journey was a tough one, I would have to get rides from my friends to go to practice sometimes ride a bike to my friend’s house. My mom is a single mother with three kids, me being the oldest There would be times I would think of dropping out of school and just work to help my mom pay bills. I decided to work hard in school and in soccer and thanks to the help from everyone in Select I am where I am at now, In a Division 2 program in Springfield, Massachusetts. But Select did not only help me out with college, I played there until I was a U18 and those five years were amazing. A kid from Fort Lauderdale that never left Florida, but thanks to Select I got to explore so much more. That also motivated me to stay in school and in Select. There is a whole world out there that I have not yet seen.I just finished my second year of college so I am a future junior. I got one more year and I will be graduating college. In the past two years that I’ve been in college Select still finds ways to help me out. I am so thankful for the club and everyone that has helped me.” ANGEL GONZALEZ

If you or anyone you know is interested to also make an impact on some of the kids and players lives and help provide opportunities that many of them would never dream of, contact us at info@ftlselect.com or you can mail any contributions to:
Fort Lauderdale Select FC
PO Box 268165
Weston, FL 33326

Thank you for your time reading this and your support,

Dion Joannou
Board Member
Fort Lauderdale Select FC

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