A product of the South Florida educational system, Peta-Gaye attended the University of Miami. After graduating with a BS degree in Mathematics she went on to do actuarial and computer programming work.
In 2004, after having her first child, she decided to go back to the classroom as a teacher. As a Calculus, Physics and Computer Science teacher she noticed that very qualified students were underestimating their abilities and not applying to the best colleges and universities.
The Foundation of Excellence was founded on the belief that this opportunity should be available to any student in the South Florida area who was academically talented but from low to moderate income families.