Riccy Amador considers it a blessing to have been a former scholarship recipient through the Archdiocese of Baltimore’s Partners in Excellence program.

“Growing up, so many doors closed for me because I did not have a green card,” she said, speaking at a Sept. 23 breakfast for PIE supporters gathered at Mother Mary Lange Catholic School in west Baltimore. “I was not eligible for many scholarships because I did not have a permanent residence.”

A native of San Lorenzo Valle, Honduras, Amador arrived in the United States at age 6 in 2006.

Amador recalls the words of her mother, Blanca Delao, “I want you all (Amador siblings) to be better than me.” Her mother’s highest education level was third grade and she “lived on the streets begging for food.” She remembers her mother saying, “I do not want my children to go through that, I want them to have the education I could not have.”

Amador, a 22-year-old parishioner of Sacred Heart, was a PIE scholar from kindergarten through eighth grade at Archbishop Borders School in Highlandtown. She also attended Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in southeast Baltimore. She is currently a senior majoring in sociology at Loyola University Maryland in north Baltimore and aspires to become an immigration lawyer. Her brothers, Carlos Amador and Selvin Amador, were also PIE scholars. Carlos, 27, earned a bachelor’s degree from Loyola University Maryland and a doctorate in pharmacy from Notre Dame of Maryland University. Selvin, 26, earned a degree in engineering from Loyola University of Maryland.