Pedro Franco ‘17, a boarder from Brazil, tells us of his Farragut Experience

Pedro FrancoWhy Farragut? My cousin, Vitor Boccardo, went here and told me how great of a place it is. [Vitor, who graduated from Farragut in 2004, was a four-time Academic Honor Roll student who led Admiral Farragut Academy to three straight Florida State High School Final 4 appearances, including the state championship as a senior while playing basketball for coach Michael Wells. Vitor played two years at Loyola Marymount University before finishing at West Florida College in 2008. Afterwards, he played basketball professionally in Brazil. Vitor plans on returning to the U.S. to coach in college. This past December, he visited Pedro here in St. Petersburg.] I knew it was military. I knew about the structure, how it was a boarding school, and how the weather was nice, similar to where I come from.

Do you plan on pursuing a similar path as your cousin? I hope on getting a scholarship to play basketball in college and then I will let everything fall into place after that. [Pedro was the starting center on the Farragut BlueJackets team that went 12-11 during the 2015-16 campaign.] There was really good competition this year that was a lot different and better than in Brazil. I developed a lot as a player, and also as a student athlete. I learned to keep my grades up, learned to handle things on my own, and became independent. We have a lot of requirements at Farragut as a student athlete.

What do you like the most about Farragut? I like the environment, the campus, and how it’s spread out like a college. I like walking to class.

How is it different from Brazil? In Brazil, you stay in one classroom the whole day and the teachers change rooms. I like the break the you get here in America while you walk to class. You get the opportunity to interact with students.

How is the diversity here different than where you went to school in Brazil? Back home, it’s all Brazilians in school. Here, you learn a lot about different cultures and a lot about how the world is.

Has it been easy to make friends at Farragut? Yes, the students here are awesome. My main friends are guys who are on the basketball team and they are from all different parts of the country but I’ve also made good friends with people from Peru, Venezuela, Mexico, China, Panama, Spain and the United States.

What is it like going to boarding school? It’s great. I’ve grown up a lot over this past year. You really learn how to take care of yourself. Of course, there are adults here to help you but you also have to learn good time-management skills, good organization.