SWEETWATER (CBSMiami) – Daniela Pelaez was worried that she might be deported back to Columbia by now, but instead the 18 year old Valedictorian of her class walked across the stage at FIU’s U.S. Century Bank Arena to receive her high school diploma Friday.

“A couple of months ago it didn’t look like I would be here at this moment,” said Pelaez. “But now I am. 13 years I waited for this.”

Read the whole story at CBS Miami