The ribbon-cutting ceremony for the 2010 National Society of Hispanic MBAs Conference & Career Expo on Oct. 22 got the full “Irish” treatment, with the marching band, cheerleaders and leprechaun parading into McCormick Place in Chicago playing the “Notre Dame Victory March.”
The shirts worn by Notre Dame representatives had “Irish” on the front and Somos ND (Spanish for “We are ND”) on the back.
The University served as lead academic sponsor for the expo, the society’s premier annual event in its mission to foster Hispanic leadership and education. This year’s expo drew more than 7,200 people, 180-plus companies and 70 educational institutions. The Notre Dame MBA program hosted the society’s corporate advisory board meeting and clinics in job-seeking skills.
In a separate ceremony following the event, Notre Dame received the society’s Brillante “Bright Flame” Award in recognition of its long-running support of the Hispanic community.
Notre Dame’s Latino connections date to 1864 when the first student with a Spanish surname enrolled. The University established the Institute for Latino Studies to support interdisciplinary research initiatives in 1998, and in 2008 launched a task force to improve educational opportunities available to Latino children. Hispanic Magazine consistently ranks Notre Dame among its top 25 colleges for Latinos.
The Notre Dame MBA program conducts an annual diversity conference that includes discussions of the growing power of Hispanic businesses and consumers. In partnership with the Holy Cross College Teacher Education Program, the MBA program organized La Familia Extendida, which encourages greater academic success among Hispanic students by providing entire families with training in English and help navigating the transition to life in the United States. Mendoza’s Nonprofit Professional Development programs also provide executive education to U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce leaders.