In 1980, Miguel Benavente was one of nearly 125,000 Cuban migrants who traveled to the United States in search of a better life during the Mariel boatlift.
“If you work hard, and you do what you’re supposed to do, you’re going to make your dreams come true. It doesn’t matter who you are,” he shares.
From those humble beginnings, Benavente learned English in two years and became a medical doctor, never losing sight of his passion to share his knowledge with young people. He went on to start the first middle school medical academy in Florida.
In his current role as the School District’s Medical Sciences Specialist/Administrator, Dr. Benavente takes an active role in overseeing the 40 medical sciences academies in Palm Beach County.
Dr. Benavente’s former student, Farhad Nimrouzi, is now in his third year of medical school. He hasn’t forgotten the genuine guidance he received from his mentor.
“He had the charisma about him that he wanted us to learn, so we wanted to learn. Not many teachers can do that,” he shares.
Click play below to see how Dr. Benavente’s journey from migrant to M.D. provided him with the prescription for success in the School District of Palm Beach County.