Fellows Program

Latinos Unite at Princeton University to Inspire Future Leaders

Latinos Unite at Princeton University to Inspire Future Leaders

Princeton, NJ, June 4, 2019 — More than 150 New Jersey students will attend a unique motivational and career-focused conference at Princeton University on June 7. This will be nonprofit Hispanics Inspiring Students’ Performance and Achievement’s 11th such youth conference. In addition to its traditional focus on middle and high school students, HISPA will also provide a program track for Latinos in college.

The Youth Conference, themed “Take Action! Achieve your Dreams,” will inspire the 7th, 8th, and 9th grade students from Elizabeth, Passaic, Trenton, Hamilton, and Perth Amboy thanks to more than 75 professionals. These leaders in academia, business, science, technology, engineering and math will stress the importance of education and introduce students to STEM careers with hands-on workshops in pharmaceuticals, electromagentism, and more. For many students, it will be their first time on a university campus.

The “Latinos in College” track of the conference will introduce university students to diverse careers and help them build professional networks. Among the participants are the Class of 2019 of the New Jersey Governor’s Hispanic Fellows Program, who will also answer the younger students’ questions about college life.

Attendees will hear from keynoter Dr. Dan-el Padilla Peralta, Assistant Professor of Classics at Princeton University, motivational speaker Gian Paul González and many leaders in other fields.

“We are extremely grateful to the public and private sector leaders who have joined our mission,” said Dr. Díaz-Claisse. “They understand the urgency of supporting Latino students to achieve and succeed in higher education and the impact their success will have on the future of America.”

Founded in 2007, New Jersey-based nonprofit HISPA is dedicated to mobilizing Hispanic role models to show students that they, too, can succeed academically and professionally. HISPA has worked with over 2,500 mentors and has reached more than 11,000 students in New Jersey, New York City, Florida and San Antonio, Texas.

This conference, HISPA’s 28th to date, is co-sponsored by the Office of Human Resources at Princeton University with the support of Lead Sponsors Novartis, Merck and Merck Hispanos Organization (MHO), and Wells Fargo. Sponsors are ETS, Bristol-Myers Squibb and its Organization for Latino Achievement (OLA), and PSEG and its Adelante employee resource group. Collaborators are Comcast, the Office of the Provost at Princeton University, UPS and its Crecer employee resource group.

The Latinos in College track is made possible by a partnership with the Office of Human Resources and the Graduate School of Princeton University, Latino Princetonians and CHPRD, and, co-hosted by AT&T.

HISPA’s educational programs are made possible by Co-founding Partner the Verizon Foundation. Annual Partners are Educational Testing Service, the PSEG Foundation, Visa and Southwest Airlines, HISPA’s official airline partner. Annual Supporters are Merck and Wells Fargo.

The 2018 NJ Governor’s Hispanic Fellows Have a Great Start

The 2018 NJ Governor’s Hispanic Fellows Have a Great Start

Princeton, NJ, June 8, 2018 — “I learned many life lessons that I will take with me forever, but besides that I finally had a feeling in my heart that my dreams could come true.”

Ana Olivera, a sophomore at Rutgers University – Newark, is reflecting on her first day as a Fellow in the New Jersey Governor’s Hispanic Fellows Program. The program successfully launched on Friday, June 1, with Educational Testing Service (ETS) Center for Advocacy and Philanthropy (CAAP) hosting the Fellows’ Class of 2018 at its Princeton headquarters.

Sponsored by the State of New Jersey and overseen by the Center for Hispanic Policy, Research and Development (CHPRD), the Governor’s Hispanic Fellows Program is a competitive, eight-week summer program that recruits 20 Hispanic and Latino college students from across New Jersey. These Fellows are then placed in internships with partnering organizations from public and private sectors. They also participate in weekly workshops coordinated by the nonprofit organization Hispanics Inspiring Students’ Performance and Achievement (HISPA) to build professional networks and foster leadership skills key to lifelong success. In addition to ETS, this year’s host organizations include Princeton University, AT&T, UPS, Wells Fargo, CHPRD, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, and Bristol-Myers Squibb.

Several State of New Jersey senior staff members took part in the kick-off: Secretary of State Tahesha Way, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Tiffany Williams, and Director of the Center for Hispanic Policy, Research and Development Sara Peña. Scott Nelson, ETS Senior Vice President of Strategy, Marketing & Growth and Chief Marketing Officer, and Lenora Green, Executive Director of CAAP, provided special remarks.

Jeffrey Vega, President and CEO of the Princeton Area Community Foundation, served as keynote speaker. Vega himself graduated from the Governor’s Hispanic Fellows Program in 1989. The program began 30 years ago to address the unique challenges Hispanic and Latino college students can face, including a lack of professional and leadership development opportunities, career networks and role models.

In addition to HISPA President and CEO Dr. Ivonne Díaz-Claisse’s testimony to what is possible with tenacity and higher education, the day concluded with workshops with career strategist and corporate trainer Rod Colón and leadership development coach Jeanette Iglesias.

“Those two workshops really challenged me to…learn about myself, my strengths and weaknesses, how to be proud of my background, and to be confident in what I say and what I do,” said Fellow Jasmine Burgos, a Rowan University student.

The Governor’s Hispanic Fellows Program will continue its collaboration with HISPA on Friday, June 8. The Fellows will participate in the ‘Latinos in College’ Track of the HISPA Youth Conference, in partnership with the Graduate School at Princeton University and co-hosted by AT&T. The full-day conference will include corporate, academic, government and nonprofit speakers as well as a panel of graduate students. In addition to providing the Fellows an opportunity to share their stories as role models to New Jersey youth, this and future workshops will provide exceptional opportunities for leadership development and to build a network of mentors.