Meet Edgardo Aceituno (he/him), Roosevelt High School Alum, current California State University, Fullerton Student. Learn more about his newfound love for learning below.

From the heart of Boyle Heights and the son of Honduran immigrants, Edgardo Aceituno is a trailblazer. As the first in his family to attend college, Edgardo knows its importance and is proud to set an example for his siblings. Reflecting on his experience at Roosevelt High School, Edgardo attributes his academic growth not only to dedicated teachers but also to the many resources within the school environment.

“They are the reason that I am here. I did not even know how to apply to college or what a UC or CSU was,” he says. 

Edgardo’s love for learning flourished under the guidance of educators who challenged him academically and created a nurturing space rich with opportunities. A pivotal resource was the College Corner, a resource within Roosevelt’s College Center. This program became a beacon for students like Edgardo, offering insights into navigating college applications, the complexities of obtaining financial aid, and providing valuable advice on optimizing the college experience. 

At the core of Edgardo’s current conquest is the Watkins Fellowship, an opportunity only available to Partnership high school seniors. The fellowship provides up to $40,000 for students to use on tuition and housing expenses. It brought Edgardo, a freshman at Cal State Fullerton, ease of mind knowing he had financial support to live off campus in a quiet study environment, a luxury he once lacked in a shared living space with his younger siblings.

“I found a new love for academics, a love that was previously absent,” he said, reflecting on what the Watkins Fellowship has done for him. “Now I view education as a pathway to meaningful connections, self-discovery, and opportunities to assist others.” 

In the Partnership’s commitment to expanding opportunities for students, Edgardo’s journey is a testament to the transformative power of the supportive environment. Emma Castro, Edgardo’s mother, echoes this sentiment, expressing deep gratitude for opportunities she said that even with two jobs, she “never would have been able to afford.”