Milpitas High School receives SVL “Inspire Higher Tour”

 

On Friday April 24th the Silicon Valley Latino “Inspire Higher Tour” made its latest spot at Milpitas High School in Milpitas Ca. This time the featured panelist included Giovanni Rodriquez, CEO of SocialxDesign and Forbes contributor, Elba Moreno Linscott, Senior Program Manager at Intuit, Leticia Pena, Senior Theater Event Services Manager at Team San Jose and Rich Perez, Founder & CEO of Perezidential Homes. Our panel was delighted to have presented to the Spanish Heritage classes, Latinos in STEM Club and the Dream Act Organization. Silicon Valley Latino is proud to have impacted and inspired another 44 eager and enthusiastic students through this tour stop, this brings our total to 333 students this semester. We would like to give a special thanks to Cultura Ambassador, Spanish Teacher and Founding Advisor to both clubs at Milpitas High School, Maria Consuelo Vargas, for her partnership and support as we coordinated this special tour stop. Once again we thank our Inspire Higher Tour sponsors because this initiative would not be possible without their support and partnership Our Champion Sponsor, Cisco Systems, Advocate Sponsors, Microsoft and Perezidential Homes and Amigo Sponsors, Kaiser Permanente and Oracle. We are excited to hold our next tour stop at Scared Heart Nativity Schools early next month!

If you are interested in hosting an Inspire Higher Tour event at your High School reach out to

us via one of our social media platforms or via this website.

Maria Vargas – SVL Cultura Ambassador

 

Maria was born in Cochabamba, Bolivia, in a valley that closely resembles the topography of the Silicon Valley. When she was three years old, as a result of an accident, she lost eyesight in her left eye. Her early childhood memories included extended hospital stays with endless speeches from her parents on the importance of confidence and perseverance. In spite of their humble origins, she still views her father as a visionary and her mother as a feminist. Their speeches inspired her to believe that seeing with one eye was not going to define who she was as a person.

Maria Vargas - SVL Cultura AmbassadorDuring her teenage years, Bolivia was ruled by a dictatorship so she channeled her youthful rebelliousness by becoming an activist.  After graduating from high school, she attended college in Oklahoma and then traveled to France for her MBA. She lived in Paris for a total of twelve years and held executive corporate positions at Seagram Brands Inc. and Wyeth-Ayerst Clinical Research.

Since she was young, she engaged in freelance journalism.  While vacationing in California, she had the opportunity to interview Jaime Escalante, who discovered that a teacher was hidden inside her. Who would dare to contradict professor Escalante? Thus she became a public school Spanish teacher in 1998 and this new career has been just as fulfilling as it is frustrating.

“Our public education system lacks effectiveness due to its highly hierarchical and bureaucratic nature.” Recently, she decided to channel that frustration by contributing to a series of initiatives that are dedicated to changing the education system, as we know it.  Some of her goals include:

 

  • Promoting Open Educational Resources (creativecommons.org) to make education accessible to all.

 

  • Empowering the teachers and administrators by becoming the nexus between many high-tech executives of Silicon Valley who want to give back to their communities. These executives also want to share their talent and experience with those who work in education.

 

  • Encouraging every student to find a passion, apply his/her talents to that passion, and learn some more to start the infinite loop. The loop that will end in higher levels of knowledge, success, and a happy, fulfilled existence.

 

  • Fostering more respect and value to minority students, especially the Latino students, so they can gain the skills to access the high-paying job market.