I noticed there is a need. I saw very talented kids drop out because they couldnít afford school even though we have relatively low tuition. They just couldnít do it, especially those from households with working parents or single parents who are struggling.
I remember my own situation when I was a student at FIT. Iím a first-generation Puerto Rican New Yorker and my sisters and all my family had to come together and work really, really hard to make sure I finished here. And in those days it was very low cost, so you can imagine how it is now for people from the same kind of background.
If I had any one inspiration for my giving, it would be my family. Giving means a lot to me personally because the kids here are extremely talented. Iím giving back to a school that shaped my life and opened so many doors for me. Most of the students who get my scholarship donít know that Iím alive! They assume itís named for someone who has passed away. I donít talk about it, but the one or two who know were surprised that Iím alive and that I teach here. I prefer it be anonymous. Even when I have Ruben Cruz Scholarship students in my class, they assume itís another Cruz altogether.