Advice, resources and job opportunities: This is how the 2023 National LOFT Leadership Institute Summit was lived
The event was organized by the Hispanic Heritage Foundation and Trinity University.
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The Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) and Trinity University recently hosted the LOFT (Latinos on Fast Track) National Leadership Institute (LLI) Summit, which brought together nearly 200 first-year college students from across the country, mostly rising.
Juan Sepulveda, J.D., Ron Calgaard distinguished professor of practice in political science at Trinity University, HHF Board member, and co-founder of the LLI, said in a press release:
It is critical for these young leaders from all over our nation to be connected through their journeys in education, the workforce, and in the community in building social and professional capital.
The event was focused on leadership, community building, professional networking, social impact, culture, and a deep dive into their learning sectors, which included:
- Finance and Business
- Media Entertainment
- Public Service
- Social Justice
The organization highlights how, beyond the guidance and inspiration provided by community leaders and corporate representatives, it was the young people who took ownership of this moment, in the midst of an "open space," to share their priorities, their vision and the resolution of issues.
“We are simply facilitating and are actually counting on and pushing the LLI Fellows (students) to lead actionably on their terms,” said Antonio Tijerino of HHF and co-founder of LLI.
HHF highlights that it captured ideas, content and data from the LLI Summit for a report that will serve as a set of youth-focused priorities, vision and solutions for the U.S. Latino community.
@HHFoundation and @Trinity_U have launched the National LOFT (Latinos on Fast Track) Leadership Institute (LLI) Summit 2023, which is taking place July 19 - July 23 in San Antonio, TX.— Hispanic Heritage Foundation (@HHFoundation) July 21, 2023
Read more https://t.co/IrMwK7O2li #LLISummit23 #LOFT #LeadersOfToday pic.twitter.com/RkSD26DUvh
Through the “Open Space” segment, a process designed to put the power in the hands of the students, not the organizers, the fellows were responsible for identifying specific issues, problems and questions they wanted to explore and share with their colleagues, create the agenda and place it on a virtual grid for all to see.
They also self-selected, presented ideas, and led open conversations about their ideas or topics in smaller group sessions. The organizers captured the resulting priorities, ideas, issues, and solutions as guidelines to support the vision of young leaders through an ongoing LOFT effort.
“We are grateful to Trinity University, the volunteers, and to our corporate partners for believing in our youth and in our methods to put them in the best position to move our community and country forward,” added Tijerino.
The LLI launched in 2021, and last year, the White House hosted the LOFT LLI "Open Space" summit in recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month.
These events allow hundreds of young leaders from across the country to return to their schools and communities with a macro vision of impact and inspiration, an unforgettable experience, and a call to action.
As LOFT Institute Fellows, scholars will be tracked and connected to one another throughout college and their careers with access to additional programs and industry-specific training, resources, activities, mentors/mentees, and career paths, including internships and programs full-time.