The Importance of Community
His View 26 www.latinastyle.com LATINAStyle Vol. 26, No. 3, 2020
& Staying Connected
Although we at Prospanica, the Association of Hispanic
MBAs and Business Professionals, had been following
the progress of COVID–19 since January, we were
surprised, but prepared, for the quick shutdowns. Knowing
the danger a pandemic would pose, especially to the Hispanic
community, I reminded our key stakeholders that our mission—
to empower and enable Hispanic professionals to achieve their
full educational, economic, and social potential—would never be
more important than during this crisis. I promised that together
we could meet this new challenge. And together we have!
On Monday, March 9, we decided to postpone our well-regarded
Leadership Summit scheduled for later that week in Irving, Texas.
Within 12 hours, we had rescheduled a track of sessions as a
Virtual Leadership Summit for later in the week. By participating
in this particular track, attendees could earn a Certificate of
Leadership Communication, issued in conjunction with the Satish
& Yasmin Gupta College of Business at the University of Dallas.
We believed in the importance of earning this credential, and,
while much of the country was shutting down, over 90 attendees
earned that certificate!
Several of our 47 chapters immediately changed their events
to virtual. The national office dedicated itself to quickly enabling
the remaining chapters to do so as well. This effort has been
so successful that our chapters continue to gain new corporate
Our national team is very experienced in conducting
high-quality virtual events. For years we have conducted monthly
webinars, usually with guest speakers, for our chapter leaders.
Last year, in partnership with the University of Dallas, we
offered our Soft Skills Development Webinar Series (still
available at www.prospanica.org/Webinars). Attendees could
qualify for a digital badge, which is a micro-credential containing
detailed information about the learning experience and the
knowledge gained. Most who earned a digital badge posted about
it on social media and added it to their LinkedIn profile.
We also created two new virtual programs. Cafecito con
Prospanica is both a highly-rated and highly-attended weekly
series on varied subjects. We also introduced our Chapter Líder
Instagram Takeover. Prospanica is well-known for the quality of
its volunteer chapter leaders. They lead this program with fun
subjects and make it conducive for networking. Over the course
of an average year they lead almost 200 high-quality events.
The team successfully pivoted to our new reality, all while
working on our normal business. We conducted our scholarship
application process and held our first Virtual Career Fair (VCF).
Thomas Savino is the Chief Executive Officer
of Prospanica, the nationally recognized
and premier nonprofit dedicated to
developing Hispanic talent and growing the
number of Hispanic professionals
represented in industries of America to
perpetuate economic growth and corporate
The VCF was planned in November 2019 and was a smashing
success! Sixteen companies participated, and over 1,700 people
registered. Given the strong participation, feedback and need, we
are planning several more.
As we continue to monitor COVID-19, we are continuously
working on our programs and events. We are working on our
postponed in-person Leadership Summit and our National
Conference and Career Expo (October 14 – 16 in Las Vegas). Not
only are we determined to deliver our normal industry-leading
quality, but we are working with the hotels to ensure these events
are as safe as possible. We greatly appreciate our corporate and
university partners that have been great! They have stayed
connected with us and provided valuable suggestions to make
our programs safer and more successful.
By Thomas Savino
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