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Polk State Student Spotlight:

Compassionate Donors Helped Daniel Keep His Promise


Daniel Cano made a promise: graduate high school, be the first in his family to go to college, graduate with a Bachelors’ degree, then start his career. Unfortunately, obstacles in life sometimes compel the promises to be altered.

Daniel graduated Kathleen High School fifth in his class, while dual enrolled at Polk State College. He was accepted to enroll at University of South Florida; unfortunately, an ACL knee injury became an obstacle that forced him to change his plans. Daniel did not give up, instead he chose to continue his college education at Polk State College. With the dual enrolled college credits he earned while in high school, he graduated from Polk State College Summa Cum Laude one year after graduating high school!

Daniel continued his education towards a Bachelor’s degree at Polk State College while working, but again, another obstacle changed his plans.  His mom was involved in a terrible car accident and Daniel was compelled to quit college to help his family. Between the bills and lack of money, he didn’t think he would ever be able to finish his education and honor his promise.

To help his family, Daniel started a new job in an entry level position for Southeastern Construction & Maintenance in Mulberry. Following a promotion, he is now a project estimator, a responsible position where a mistake on Daniel’s part could cost the company thousands of dollars.

Yet Daniel did not give up on his goals. He said, “Everyone has their own obstacles in life, but I made a promise to myself to finish what I started and earn my Bachelor’s degree!” Daniel applied for and was awarded a Polk State College Foundation Devon M. and Louise B. Hizer Trust Scholarship, allowing him to re-start his education and enroll at Polk State College this fall!

This scholarship will allow Daniel to fulfill his promise to himself. He plans to graduate from Polk State College with his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration in 2022. His goal is to expand into a management position with his employer.  Daniel stated, “I see a future there. Every spring, the company pays for a class, so I took an online Project Management class through Polk State Corporate College. I love the idea of construction because I enjoy watching “nothing” turn into something.”

Forever thankful for the scholarship he received and the donors who supported it, he will now be able to fulfill a promise to himself, finish his college degree, and pursue a career that he enjoys.