Message from the President and CEO

Author: Paul J. Luna, President and CEO

May 9, 2016

Recently, Helios sent out a survey to you, our key stakeholders, asking for your input on the kind of information you find valuable and would like to receive from us.  Thank you, to those of you who shared your thoughts with us.  We have re-imagined our Education Connection newsletter and are proud to share the first issue with you.   

In this issue, you will read about our work in both Arizona and Florida and some of our key strategies to ensure individuals in both states achieve postsecondary education success. In addition, you will see recently released data on FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) completion rates and how Helios is using that data to make informed decisions about increasing student access to postsecondary education.  Lastly, you will learn about some of the results of our recent investments through feature stories and an engaging video.  We hope you find all of this valuable as we collectively work to ensure more students are academically prepared, across the education continuum, for success in college and career.

Helios is committed to the success of all students in Arizona and Florida, and as the work of the Foundation has evolved, Helios is focusing its efforts on specific statewide strategies. Through our work in both states, we have identified a four-tiered approach to education reform which includes:  Strategic Investing, Building and Reforming Systems, Public and Political Will Building and Collaborating and Convening.  

In Arizona, a state where Latino students comprise the largest percentage of the state’s K-12 public school population, Helios is implementing the Arizona Latino Student Success Initiative, which is ensuring that all students, but especially Latino students, are prepared for success in college and career.

In Florida, the Foundation is focusing its work in the Tampa, Orlando and Miami regions through the Florida Regional Student Success Initiative with the goal of ensuring more first-generation, minority and underrepresented students achieve a postsecondary education.  We know that we can’t do this work alone and we appreciate your partnership as we work together to ensure that more students pursue, persist and complete a postsecondary education.   

Click here to learn more about our four strategies and how we are focusing our work in both Arizona and Florida. 


Paul J. Luna

President and CEO

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