The Abundis Family
When Griselda Abundis moved from Mexico to San Antonio, she didn’t know much English, and the language barrier left her full of doubt and feeling stuck. Fortunately, her husband’s family lived in San Antonio. They were familiar with the area and recommended that Griselda look into AVANCE. Wanting to give her young daughter Lorna better opportunities and get ahead herself, Griselda enrolled in PCEP.
In addition to learning how to cultivate her daughter’s learning, Griselda found PCEP to be a source of empowerment. Despite holding a degree from a Mexican university, she previously felt limited by her inability to speak English. Through AVANCE, Griselda took ESL classes and built confidence in her communication skills. She revalidated her degree and enrolled at the University of Texas at San Antonio, graduating with the EC-4 Bilingual Teacher certification and a Master of Arts in Bicultural Bilingual Studies. While in graduate school, she was hired at AVANCE and began her career in education. She recently retired as a bilingual teacher in the public school system, where she spent years helping her young students build solid educational foundations. Griselda and her husband have since started their own company, and she is training to oversee its accounting and administration.
While PCEP gave Griselda the support and encouragement to overcome, it also laid the groundwork that she built on to help her daughter succeed. Lorna was an only child then, so PCEP allowed her to socialize with other children and develop her language skills. The program also provided structure, so Lorna was comfortable with routines at school and in her daily life from an early age.
Today, at 20, Lorna is thriving at Loyola University Chicago, where she is studying Healthcare Administration with hopes of either becoming an administrator for a women’s center or medical spa or working on an ethics committee for clinical trials. She also plans to continue her education to pursue a Master’s in Health Systems Management.
Griselda can still see PCEP’s influence on Lorna’s communication and social skills and her ability to organize her studies. She credits AVANCE with providing support along her family’s journey and helping them be where they are today.