This month, beginning with National Charter Schools Week, we will feature stories from charter school graduates from across the country. Check back every day to see a new student feature in our 30 Days of Grad series.
My name is Lexes Rubio, and I started going to Christel House Academy (CHA), a charter school in Indianapolis, when it first opened in 2002 - fifteen years ago. I began as a 1st grader and was part of the first-ever graduating class in 2014. What stood out to me about Christel House is how tight-knit the school community is. Classes are small, which was great for me because I could ask countless questions. Teachers knew my name and my story, so not only were they there to support my school work, but I could confide in them about my personal life, too. Even when I return to visit now, teachers and counselors always greet me and take time to catch up with me.
Christel House really prepared me for college. In high school, I was able to graduate with honors and arrived at college with 20 college credits. At the University of Indianapolis, I am an Accounting major on the CPA/Certified Public Accountant track which requires 150 credits to graduate. Students usually must do a 5th year or go to the fast-track MBA program, but because I came in with college credits, I’ll be able to complete my degree within 4 years.
All through college, the CHA College & Careers Administrator has stayed in touch and I love that CHA is big on keeping connected to their alumni. In the summer after my freshman year, Christel House recommended me for a 6-week internship with International Cruise & Excursions. I am so glad that I could do something out of my comfort zone as it has helped me grow. I was able to be a Marketing intern, meet friends from Mexico, and explore Arizona.
In January 2016, I participated in the University of Indianapolis Fellowship Program that included six hours of interview training and assistance in finding an internship. I was connected with Indy Eleven, the Indianapolis professional soccer team, and started working in June 2016 as an Accounting intern. I've gained skills that I thought I never would – not only in the office, but also in the box office on game days. Aside from work and classes, I am also very active on campus. I am the secretary for the Accounting Club and the Vice President for the Student Organization of Latinos.
Christel House has been a supportive foundation for me. The opportunities CHA has offers have been stepping stones in preparing me as the individual I needed to be for college and for life. As I prepare to start my senior year in the fall of 2017, I have many goals in mind. I hope to be able to gain more experience through more internships and have more focus on public accounting. I look forward to graduating next May and become a Certified Public Accountant. And I have Christel House and the team of caring people there to thank.