New Jersey-based Hispanics Inspiring Students’ Performance and Achievement (HISPA) celebrated Three Kings Day in January with its fourth annual recognition and awards gala in Iselin, NJ.
The sold-out event drew attendees from throughout the New Jersey-New York region, including representatives from AT&T, Educational Testing Service, Novartis, Bristol Myers-Squibb, PSE&G, Verizon, Merck and Investors Bank.
HISPA programs encourage middle school students to excel academically, graduate from high school and pursue higher education. It does this through mentoring and role-model presentations by volunteers serving more than 1,000 students in 18 schools.
Founder and President Ivonne Díaz-Claisse, Ph.D., presented 2011 awards to: AT&T, HISPA Sponsor of the Year; Merck Hispanos Organization, Champion of the Year; and Yolanda Baker, of CHUBB, the Role Model of the Year.
Debbie Storey, Chief Diversity Officer at AT&T, delivered a rousing keynote address on the value of diversity and the importance of science and technology careers for Latinos. AT&T is a major supporter of HISPA and sends outstanding technology-savvy speakers to HISPA conferences.
“We are grateful to our many volunteers, corporate and non-profit supporters and friends who contribute in countless ways to the success of our programs,” said Díaz-Claisse. “Having to find a bigger venue for next January’s event is a great problem to have.”