Ambition Is All That Is Needed for Success


Germán Acero, Libre

Daniel Pedreira at one of his book signings.

Albany Muria, Editor

Success comes to those that put their maximum effort into something they are passionate about. Those people are the ones that use everything they were taught to achieve their goals in ways they never thought possible.

Daniel Pedreira, a Gables alumni of the Class of 2002, is the subject of a success story that will inspire many of today’s Cavaliers to follow in his foot steps.

As a former Cavalier, Pedreira was able to develop his curiosity towards government, history, and international affairs. He didn’t only succeed academically but he also excelled in school clubs such as the National Honor Society (NHS). By being involved at school, he was able to form friendships with people he still keeps in touch with to this day.

Not only did Pedreira have a great learning experience at Gables, but teachers like Mrs. Griselle Freijo-Cantrell and Mrs. Mercedes Verazain were able to provide him with advice about his academic and intellectual inquiries, and encouraged him to reach above and beyond.

“I was lucky to have teachers that encouraged me to pursue my goals,” Pedreira said.

As a former IB student, Pedreira had the opportunity to be in the Spanish program, which provided him with a bedrock that allowed him to learn how to research and write a proper research paper before he entered college. He feels this learning experience made college easier.

His academic success continued after high school. He first attended the University of Miami, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in International Studies. In addition, he served as a Congressional Aide for Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen. Pedreira is currently pursuing a Master’s degree from George Mason University in Virginia and will graduate in December.

At that time, he had the opportunity to research Cuban history. Learning about the political situation Cuba has had over the past 55 years, it runs the risk of being lost. This led him to write his now published book “El Último Constituyente: El desarrollo político de Emilio “Millo” Ochoa”

“The book is a biography of a prominent Cuban Senator from the 1940s who was the last living signer of the 1940 Constitution,” Pedreira said.

The book also expands on Ochoa being the founder of two political parties who served as a sort of “senior statesman” within the Cuban exile community. Pedreira was able to demonstrate through his book that Ochoa was highly respected for his honesty, humility, and patriotism.

Besides being able to use the skills he learned in the IB Spanish program to write his book, Pedreira has opened himself to many opportunities that soon will expand. He has even had the opportunity to speak about his book on a few radio shows and has also presented his book at different venues, like the University of Miami.

“The book’s publication has allowed me to find my own voice from a literary perspective and has given me the opportunity to speak before groups of intellectuals and fellow students about the life of this great man and about Cuban history in general. I hope that this is the first of many books to come,” Pedreira said.

Even though high school isn’t easy, and life gets harder along the way, students should always work towards their dreams. Your learning experiences and determination can lead you to amazing results, such as publishing your own book!

Despite all of the hard work students have to put into the IB program, Pedreira’s success story shows that his dedication did pay off.