FIU grad wins HYPE Miami Award


Rocio de la Grana – a current master’s student in social work at FIU’s Robert Stempel College of Public Health and Social Work, who graduated Summa Cum Laude with bachelor’s in social work in 2014 – was recognized March 4 with the Most Valuable Graduate (MVG) HYPE Miami Award by the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce.

De la Grana immigrated to the United States from Cuba when she was a small child.  After getting her bachelor’s degree in liberal studies she decided to pursue her true calling and get a second bachelor’s in social work.

“I am in shock,” said de la Grana. “I feel so privileged and honored. Thank you to the exemplary mentors I have had at FIU.”

During her undergraduate studies at FIU’s School of Social Work, de la Grana was an exemplary student demonstrating superior focus, hard work and determination in her scholarly pursuits. She also performed exceptionally well in her two-semester internship with the Green Family Foundation NeighborhoodHELP™ (Health Education Learning Program).

Currently she is in her final year of her master’s in social work and is expected to graduate in Summer 2015. In January, she will commence the clinical practicum portion of the program at the University of Miami Mailman Center for Child Development. She serves as a student representative on the Student Conduct Committee at FIU and is a member of the steering committee. She is also the current master’s of social work student representative for the National Association of Social Workers at the Miami-Dade County Unit and will be honored with Social Work Student of the Year award in mid-March.

“Rocio de la Grana is the epitome of a motivated, intelligent, engaged student and intern, a community member and a future social worker,” said Jennifer Abeloff, associate director of the School of Social Work and the one who nominated her for the award. “She performed exceptionally well in the classroom, in her internship and in her service to Florida International University and the wider Miami community.”

The HYPE Miami Awards recognize Miami-Dade’s brightest young professionals who have demonstrated outstanding achievements. All applicants must be under the age of 35, and have lived or worked in Miami-Dade County for at least two consecutive years.