Update: Thank you to all HISPA supporters that participated, for photos of the event, please visit: https://www.hispa.org/files/HISPA_2011_Kick_Off_Album.pdf.
PRESS ADVISORY: FREEHOLD, NJ – The HISPA Role Model Bureau, a national non-profit organization dedicated to providing professional Hispanic role models for young students, will hold its 4th Annual Kick-off and Recruiting Event on Thursday, Oct. 6th, 5:30 p.m., at Kean University, STEM Building Auditorium, 1000 Morris Avenue, Union, New Jersey.

The theme for this year’s event to be held during Hispanic Heritage Month is “Unity, Strength, and Leadership for our Youth.” Dr. Juan Andrade, Jr., president of the United States Hispanic Leadership Institute (USHLI), will be the keynote speaker. The reception and program provides an opportunity for HISPA to highlight the past year’s achievements and recruit new volunteers to serve as inspiration for students to pursue higher education, and also offer a unique networking experience for professionals from the academia, government, business and non-profit sectors who will be attending.
The event is sponsored by Wells Fargo and hosted by the EEO/EOF Program at Kean University.
“We are very excited with HISPA’s continuous growth and the momentum fueled by the enthusiasm of our supporters, including the hundreds of volunteers who have shared their inspirational life stories with more than 2,500 students,” said Dr. Ivonne Diaz-Claisse, president of HISPA, which stands for Hispanics Inspiring Students’ Performance and Achievement. “We are also pleased to have the support of educational institutions and organizations that recognize how our efforts will have an impact for generations to come, and we are grateful for the collaboration with the EEO/EOF Program at Kean University and the support of Wells Fargo as sponsor for our 2011 event.”
“Wells Fargo is proud to partner with HISPA in this event,” said Brenda Ross-Dulan, Wells Fargo’s regional president for Southern New Jersey. “We share its goal of providing inspiring mentors who can encourage Latino youngsters to continue their education and reach their full potential and we are pleased to support their very important efforts.”
Dr. Diaz-Claisse said Dr. Andrade was selected as keynote speaker because he embodies the inspiration, strength and leadership traits that define this year’s theme. Dr. Andrade is a 2011 honoree of the Hispanic Heritage Foundation. Among its many accomplishments, USHLI has registered 2.2 million voters, published 425 studies on Latino demographics, and trained over 285,000 present/future leaders.

HISPA (www.hispa.org) is a New Jersey-based national non-profit organization dedicated to contributing to America’s future by inspiring Latino students’ academic performance and achievement, and mobilizing Latino professionals to serve as active role models in educational programs. The majority of the role models are in the STEM fields: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.

To date, more than 500 professional leaders have joined as volunteers through HISPA’s year-round programs since its inception in September 2008. Role models – who emphasize educational achievements and professional accomplishments – have visited cities throughout New Jersey including New Brunswick, Paterson, West New York, Summit, Red Bank, Freehold, Trenton, Passaic, Elizabeth, Union City and Perth Amboy.
In 2010-2011, more than 200 volunteers shared their stories with 500 students during ongoing or recurring visits at nine schools and at the HISPA 2011 Youth Conference at Princeton University held this past June. In addition to the Role Model Program, HISPA holds an annual youth conference.
HISPA was the recent recipient of a $50,000 grant from the Center for Hispanic Policy, Research and Development (CHPRD). The grant, which was announced on Sept. 7, will allow HISPA to substantially expand its efforts to reach students. HISPA’s plans for 2011-2012 include the expansion of the Role Model Program to 18 schools.
For further information or to RSVP for the event, visit www.hispa.org, or contact HISPA by email at francisco@hispa.org, or phone at 917.531.5392. RSVPs are requested by Oct. 3. Media representatives may contact Ivette Mendez at imendezandco@gmail.com, or phone at 973.518.1537. Register by October 3rd: http://hispa.pingg.com/HISPA2011KickOff.