From News@Rider: “Rider announces continued participation in HISPA’s Latinos in College Program”

Rider announces continued participation in HISPA’s Latinos in College Program

Monday, Oct 17, 2022

16 students will benefit from additional professional development

[Reposted from News@Rider – Read the original article at https://www.rider.edu/about/news/rider-announces-continued-participation-hispas-latinos-college-program]

For the second year in a row, Rider University will participate in HISPA’s Latinos in College program. HISPA, which stands for Hispanics Inspiring Students’ Performance and Achievement, is a nonprofit that works to advance Hispanic academic and career achievement.

This year, 16 Rider students will participate in the year-long program. Through a series of workshops featuring professionals and other experts, the students will learn about how to interview for a job, negotiate a salary, speak publicly, prepare a resume and more.

Francheliz Taiz Peguero Mauricio, a junior accounting major who participated in the program last year, says the preparation she received translated into personal and professional growth.

“Before the program, I didn’t know I was going to be where I’m at now,” she says. “I have HISPA to thank. It gave me a lot of confidence.”

The Latinos in College program, sponsored at Rider by Bristol Myers Squibb, was designed to provide three reinforcing benefits. Undergraduates receive access to professional opportunities and networks, colleges increase services to historically underserved students, and employers create value by hiring a more diverse and prepared workforce.

Taiz Peguero Mauricio’s story illustrates those benefits in action.

She came to Rider with aspirations to study accounting in preparation for a career assisting law enforcement in tracking financial fraud. A natural at working with numbers, she was introduced to the concept in high school in Bayonne, New Jersey. Even though she believed accounting was too rote to pursue as a career, she became hooked by the idea of conducting financial investigations that could be used as evidence in civil or criminal court trials.

“I have always been good with numbers and got good grades, but I didn’t like accounting in high school,” she says. “The idea of trying to track money and working with law enforcement through accounting is what intrigued me.”

Through the HISPA program, the organization’s president and CEO, Dr. Ivonne Díaz-Claisse, introduced Mauricio to a contact at Mercadien, a local accounting firm. After an interview, she was selected to receive a paid three-month summer internship. Working on the company’s audit team, Mauricio was exposed to a broad range of auditing and accounting tasks. She was able to develop professional relationships as well as a close bond with a mentor assigned to her by Mercadien. The company has asked her to return for a winter internship.

While Rider provides layers of career development support for its students, including through its Engaged Learning Program and Cranberry Investment initiative, Mauricio says participating in HISPA’s Latinos in College program was instrumental in making more Hispanic leaders visible to her.

“Many of us have parents who aren’t from here and are struggling with life and work in order to make their kids successful professionals, so when we see others like us in positions of power, it gives us motivation and hope toward our dreams becoming a reality,” she says.

Participation in the Latinos in College program has strengthened Rider’s ongoing relationship with HISPA. In recognition of Rider’s dedication to promoting higher education attainment and career success for its students who identify as Hispanic, HISPA named Rider’s Norm Brodsky College of Business the recipient of its annual Corazón Award in 2020. The award is given each year to an organization that has excelled in its support of HISPA.

“We are enormously proud of our ongoing engagement with HISPA and the ability to offer even more opportunities to our talented students,” says Dr. Eugene Kutcher, dean of the Norm Brodsky College of Business.