It’s not every day someone gets the opportunity to sit down at a table with five Ivy League students.
That’s the reality for Charlie and Lisa Flores. All five of their children are Ivy Leaguers.
Their oldest, Lysette Flores, 27, will graduate from Harvard University with her Masters. Jacob Flores, 25, who was a National Hispanic Recognition Scholar in high school, graduated from Dartmouth College. He also briefly played for the Green Bay Packers. The middle child Charlie, 23, graduated from Columbia University. John Paul, 20, is currently a freshman and playing football at Dartmouth College and their younger brother Michael just graduated from high school and will be joining John Paul at Dartmouth in the fall.
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"All the credit to our parents," Jacob said. "They really made an effort to invest in us at an early age. Letting us do stuff that we were passionate about. I played five sports at one point."
"You see all the contributions and hard work they put in and for me, I just can’t let that go to waste," Charlie said.
Their kind words brought their parents to tears.
"It’s very humbling to look back and see all of their accomplishments," said their father, who is also named Charlie.
"To think, they have given us so much credit! Although we laid the foundation for them, they were the ones that did all the had work," said their mom Lisa.
Getting to this point was not easy. All five children can speak to that.
"It was a lot of long nights. Staying up without much sleep, but I think it all paid off in the end," said Michael. "Specifically, going out and achieving stuff such as National Hispanic Recognition Scholar and the 95 and above of course."
That’s right. Getting straight A’s was not good enough in the Flores household. All of the children were expected to maintain GPA’s that were 95-percent or above.
It wasn’t just the kids who were working hard though. At one point, money was tight and the Flores’ didn’t know if they were going to be able to continue to pay the private school tuition for their kids. Lisa said, they cleaned the schools restrooms to make money. She said there was nothing she and her husband wouldn’t do to continue to position her children in the best place possible.
It’s not lost on the Flores family that they are minorities and that their success means so much more than just success within their household. Their parents say it wasn’t just about working hard because you’re Hispanic, but it was about working hard because it was the right thing to do.
"I just said I want to be in the best place. I want to put you in the best schools. We’re going to work hard and we are going to do great things," said Lisa.
Between them they have have their futures planned from entrepreneurship, to business school to faith-based leadership.