FRANTZ PLACIDE SPEECH (Courtesy of WSVN-TV, Miami)
Tampa, FL -- Frantz Placide
, a 2010 Wagner College graduate and a dynamic All-Northeast Conference (NEC) performer for the Seahawks from 2007-2010, stepped onto a different stage when he was asked to be a speaker at last night’s Republican National Convention.
Placide, who majored in sociology with a minor in education, spoke in support of former Florida Governor Jeb Bush’s school choice program that allowed him to attend Archbishop Curley Notre Dame High School in Miami where he was a standout scholastically as well as athletically.
“I first met the governor in my sophomore year of high school when he visited with a select number of students at our school,” said Placide. "I guess something must have resonated in him as I then received a call from him in 2011 asking for permission to use my name on an upcoming appearance he was having on the Sean Hannity Show."
“Then, he reached out to me a couple weeks ago asking if I would speak at the Republican National Convention as someone who has been a success story through his school choice program, he continued. “It was quite an honor and a thrill to be asked to take part with something of this magnitude.”
Placide is in the process of pursuing a career as a state trooper in New Jersey, where his fiancée Ashley attends graduate school at Rutgers University. He has passed the physical portion of the Academy’s training test and is expecting to take the written portion soon.
During his Wagner football career, Placide was one of the most outstanding special team players in Seahawk history in addition to being a stellar defensive back. In 2010, following his senior season, he earned First-Team All-NEC return specialist accolades for the second-straight year, while also adding Second Team accolade as a defensive back. The Miami native blocked two kicks that season, returning one for a touchdown, while ranking third in the league with an average of 19.7 yards per kick return. Placide, who was selected to play in the FCS Senior Scout Bowl, earned two NEC Special Teams Player of the Week citations in 2010 year and six for his career. Over his four years, came up with 12 blocks while producing five special teams touchdowns.
Also as a senior he recovered three fumbles and forcing two en route to a NEC-leading five forced/recovered fumbles. Placide also had four pass break-ups and 5.0 tackles for loss among his total of 40.0 stops. In 2009, he earned his first All-NEC postseason honor when he was tabbed First-Team All-NEC return specialist.
"It was a pleasure to coach Frantz here,” said Wagner College head football coach. “The first thing you notice about him is how bright he is and then it’s apparent how much of an electricity and vibrancy that he has. I’m not surprised that some important people are picking up on the same things that we saw in him at Wagner. And he was one heckuva football player too.”
Speaking from Tampa earlier today, Placide indicated he is hopeful of attending Wagner’s season-opening game this evening when the Seahawks meet Florida Atlantic in Boca Raton, FL.
Here is the transcript of Bush introducing Placide followed by Frantz’s speech.
“Let me introduce you to Frantz Placide. Because we gave him a choice, he got a great education.”
“I grew up in the inner city of Miami. In a place where your zip code determined your chances of success, my only option was an unproductive and failing school.
I knew that could lead to an unproductive and failing future. Thanks to Governor Bush's school choice program, I got the chance to choose a better school.
Making my education my priority, I enrolled at one of the toughest private schools in Miami - Archbishop Curley Notre Dame.
I'm sure like a lot of us, it was my mother, Carlette, who really pushed for a choice in my education.I'm glad she did. Her devotion to my future has given me a chance to succeed.
I've graduated from Wagner College, and am looking forward to a life of learning, and serving my community.
Who knows what the future would have held, if there hadn't been a choice in my education?
But I do know the numbers for failure, and I probably wouldn't have had a very good chance.
Governor Bush's school choice program gave me the chance to achieve academic success, in the school that was the best fit for me.
I took it from there.”
“Thank you Frantz, it's been an honor to see you grow up. Your story is driving powerful change across this nation. And some of the biggest reformers are Republicans.”