Princeton, N.J., Jan. 12, 2015 – Non-profit organization HISPA (Hispanics Inspiring Students’ Performance and Achievement) will recognize volunteers, sponsors and collaborators at its Three Kings Banquet on January 14, 2016 at Pines Manor in Edison, NJ. The event will gather some 300 leaders from the public and private sectors to celebrate the contributions of the over 2,000 Latino role models who participate in HISPA’s educational programs, which aim to inspire Latino youth to pursue education to fulfill their dreams.
The Three Kings Banquet coincides with the January 6 holiday of Epiphany, also known as Three Kings Day, which is the traditional gift-giving period of the Nativity in Spanish-speaking countries. HISPA selected this theme to thank those whose gift of inspiring students assures their academic achievement.
HISPA will present its “Transform” award to the Verizon Foundation as Sponsor of the Year, its “Inspire” award to the UPS Crecer Latino Business Resource Group for employees as Champion of the Year, and its “Share” award to AT&T engineer Mayra Cáceres as Role Model of the Year. HISPA uses several criteria in choosing award recipients, including a demonstrated personal commitment to HISPA’s mission; employee participation in HISPA events; and funding and in-kind resources.
The Verizon Foundation has enabled HISPA to engage students in 18 months of specialized app development programs, STEM-focused Youth Conferences and corporate visits. Furthermore, Verizon Hispanic Service Organization (HSO) had the second largest number of HISPA volunteers of any organization in 2014-15.
UPS Crecer members, who together have donated over 500 community service hours to HISPA’s mission, made HISPA programming possible in New Jersey and New York City.
The evening’s keynote speaker is UPS Vice President of Technology Juan Pérez, an inspirational example of the power of education, dedication and hard work. Pérez also serves as the Executive Sponsor for the UPS Crecer Latino Business Resource Group.
“Our employee Latino business resource group’s involvement with HISPA has had a lasting impact in the lives of middle- and high-school students in communities where children need role models and examples to motivate them to stay in school and pursue a college education,” said Pérez.
AT&T employee Mayra Cáceres’ decade of volunteer contributions include co-designing the HISPA Youth Conference curriculum, serving as a Youth Conference Advisor for 17 conferences and actively participating as a HISPA Role Model, sharing her story with students for the last eight years.
“The leadership of our award recipients and volunteers is commendable,” said Dr. Ivonne Díaz-Claisse, HISPA founder and president. “They step into classrooms and give the gift of their stories, sharing their childhood obstacles and dreams as well as their educational and professional journeys to inspire hope and build Latino students’ confidence in their futures.”
Long-time HISPA collaborator AT&T champions this year’s list of donors as the event’s Diamond Sponsor.
“AT&T values the strong relationships we have had with HISPA since 1984 and with the Latino community,” said Kathleen Larkin, AT&T Vice President of Human Resources and HISPA board member. “HISPA’s great work to inspire and promote student success is aligned with AT&T Aspire, our signature philanthropic initiative. AT&T and our HACEMOS Employee Resource Group are proud to support HISPA and its educational programs for youth.”
Event sponsors also include Investors Bank, PSEG, The Annie E. Casey Foundation, UPS, Verizon, BMS, PNC Bank, Prudential and the NJ Devils, Samsung and Camera Mundi, Inc. HISPA’s 2016 Annual Partners are Educational Testing Service, Verizon, ESPN, Inc., AT&T, Comcast and Southwest Airlines, HISPA’s official airline partner.
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HISPA App Development Workshops funded by Verizon Foundation with additional support of Samsung and ETS:
UPS Crecer HISPA Role Model Marina Batista at the HISPA Youth Conference at Columbia University: