Cisco’s “Conexion” – High Impact, Inclusion & Collaboration!

 

Silicon Valley Latino was a media partner to Cisco’s Hispanic Heritage Month event a few months ago. While there, we had the opportunity to interview several Conexion (Cisco’s Latino Employee Resource Organization) Board Members about the group’s purpose, strategies and impact.

 

We are proud to have many of our Cultura Ambassadors lead Conexion’s efforts and impact in the community through many programs such as “Escuela” and “High School Career Fairs”.  Additionally, this featured video showcases Conexion’s multiple values, from an innovative relationships, products, and culture perspective, as well as through talent pipeline and strategic community outreach.

 

“Conexion plays an integral part in Cisco’s Inclusion and Collaboration strategy. It’s about creating an incubator for innovation, best practices, and collaboration across the globe” says Maria Medrano, Inclusion and Collaboration Strategist, Cisco.

 

We would also like to thank Anne-Marie Azzi and Beatriz Medina Pratt for their exemplary leadership to Conexion for the past two and a half years.  During their tenure, Conexion received numerous awards and recognition, such as Silicon Valley Latino ERG of the Year 2014, Top ERG Award by Latina Style and HITEC, the Hispanic IT Executive Council in 2014. Would also like to give a special thanks to Conexion Executive Sponsors, Guillermo Diaz Jr, Senior Vice President and CIO and Yvette Kanouff, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Cloud Solutions. Silicon Valley Latino would also like to give a warm welcome to the new Conexion co-presidents, Juan Del Villar and Oscar Gomez, we look forward to collaborating with them as they step into their new roles.

 

From a personal perspective it’s been a true pleasure to see so many of our Cultura Ambassadors grow professionally and climb the corporate ladder.  A few we would like to recognize today are Guillermo Diaz Jr., Ileana Rivera, Anne-Marie Azzi, Beatriz Medina Pratt, Katty Coulson, Esmeralda Barriga, and Francisco Espana.

 

We look forward to following Conexion and featuring more of their work in 2016!

 

 

Mexican Consulate presents Cross – Border Art & Tech Talk

 

Silicon Valley Latino was delighted to be a media partner as The Consulate General of Mexico in San Jose presented a lunch discussion panel on immigration, the arts and the tech sector on April 1st at the San Jose Museum of Art with guest speakers: Katie Aragon from FWD.US, Professor Matt Spangler from San Jose State University and Curator Emmanuel Audelo from the Mexican organization Habitajes. The panel was moderated by the Consul of Media Relations and Cultural Affairs, Loren Cruz, who remarked about the interest of the Consulate in promoting a positive image of Mexico and the Latino community in the area.

 Cross - Border Art & Tech Talk Lunch

The discussion panel featured the contributions of the Latino community in the US and Silicon Valley, while drawing strategies in order to promote the participation of the Mexican community and for them to take a greater advantage of the programs that could enhance the exercise of their rights in this country, and the wellbeing of their families.

 

This panel highlighted the strength of the Latino community. Economically the Latino community has a purchasing power of more than $1.3 billion USD which represents the 10% of the country. Since 2008, the purchasing power of the Hispanic community has increased by 45% and it is expected to reach $1.7 billion USD by 2017. Mexican immigrants are also business owners that create numerous jobs. In fact, the Latino community has more than 2.3 million businesses, which accounts for more than 8% of the firms in the US. These businesses create more than 2 million jobs. Mexican immigrants, including second and third generations, account for 8% of the GDP of the US, and the Latino community’s influence in the economy is actually growing. Currently one sixth of the US population is Latino, and two thirds of them are of Mexican origin. In fact, more than 20 million people of Mexican origin reside in Texas and California, and these are the two of the principal state economies of the US!

 Cross - Border Art & Tech Talk Lunch

All of the speakers brought very interesting insights to the discussion. Professor Spangler, for instance talked about the different kinds of immigrants that come to this country in order to be able to understand the myths behind immigration currently in the US in this political period. The San Jose State Professor’s research also shows that immigrants are not taking jobs from US citizens. On the other hand, Katie Aragon from FWD.US highlighted the numerous contributions that immigrants have made in the tech sector as well as industries and how immigration reform could help to regularize and match the needs of the industry in Silicon Valley and further create wealth in the US. Emmanuel Audelo, talked about how the arts are the right vehicle to join communities, eradicate myths behind immigration and work together towards a future with less social violence.

 

The Consulate General of Mexico in San Jose would like to give special thanks to the San Jose Museum of Art and Silicon Valley Latino for making this event possible as well as to those who joined this special discussion panel.

 

Latina Coalition Silicon Valley Toastmasters Open House

We welcome additional members of the Latina Coalition to participate in this ongoing professional development. Our Open House will serve as a mock meeting where current Latina CoalitionToastmasters members will showcase their improvements thus far. 

Please join us for this exciting opportunity to learn more about the Latina Coalition Toastmasters Club. 

Note: Meeting will take place at the Sobrato Center for Nonprofits in Conference room Cupertino A. Light snacks and refreshments will be provided. 

http://latinacoalition.org/

Cisco’s 2015 Hispanic Heritage Month

 

Silicon Valley Latino had the pleasure of covering Cisco’s 2015 Hispanic Heritage Month .

Impacto Latino! That was the theme of Cisco’s first annual Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration  held on October 21, 2015 at its San Jose campus. Hosted by Conexión, Cisco’s Latino ERO, the event showcased the contributions made by Latinos, both at Cisco and across the globe, and also celebrated the unique Latino culture with food, music, art and dancing. The event coincides with the U.S. observation of HHM which is recognized from September 15 – October 15, the anniversary of independence for several Latin American countries.

Cisco Hispanic Heritage Month 2015Over 200 attendees joined locally and from remotes sites in Mexico City, Brussels, Raleigh, NC, Austin, TX, and Boxborough, MA to hear from the great line up of speakers, network with their peers and celebrate. The agenda featured several Cisco leaders including Guillermo Diaz, Jr., SVP & CIO and Executive Sponsor of Conexion, Shari Slate, VP, Chief Inclusion & Collaboration, and Maria Dincel, Director, Sponsor Marketing and Head of Olympic Games.  In addition, a professional development component was offered and Gina Rudan, leadership coach and author of Practical Genius, delivered a keynote.

Event speakers:

Guillermo shared the impact Conexión has made over the past 17 years and highlighted the continued efforts to develop the next generation of Latino leaders at Cisco. He also shared the impact that Conexion had on his career and encouraged the audience to disrupt themselves and inspire exponentially.

Maria shared Cisco’s sponsorship plans for the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics and the efforts Cisco is making in Brazil around country transformation.

Gina Rudan shared her 5 steps to leveraging your practical geniusand the importance of marrying the heart and the mind to create your genius.

Shari highlighted the power of partnerships to help unleash the power of our talent. She also shared the progress made by the Office of Inclusion and Collaboration to transform the company.

Following the main event, attendees in San Jose had the opportunity to network with their peers, learn Zumba, and connect with local Latino owned businesses – PONDL Winery, Vino Latino, Voces Wine, Tico Coffee Roasters, Teatro Vision, Ventana de Flores and Latino Art Expressions.  Conexión

Silicon Valley Latino looks forward to covering Cisco’s 2016 Hispanic Heritage Month event.

If you were a part of this event share your experience with the Silicon Valley Latino community.

Don’t just look for a Mentor: Develop your Personal Board of Advisors!

Article originally posted on LinkedIn by Cultura Ambassador Leandro Margulis

In this series, professionals thank those who helped them reach where they are today. Read the posts here, then write your own. Use #ThankYourMentor and @mention your mentor when sharing.

“You need a mentor.”

 

If you’re like most working professionals, this is one of the first pieces of advice you heard around college graduation or upon landing your first job.  (Stressed out at work? Get a mentor. Not sure how to navigate office politics? Get a mentor. Want to know whether going to grad school or switching careers is the right option for you? Get a mentor. Ad nauseum.)

But whether you received this advice from one of your professors, your mom, your neighbor, or a co-worker, finding a mentor is a lot easier said than done. (It’s not only hard to locate someone with the professional chops and time to help you out, it can be even harder for some people to ask for help in the first place.) And how do you know whether the mentor you do eventually hook up with is the right person to help you with your current challenges, let alone professional issues you encounter five or ten years from now?

Here’s the thing—you don’t.

The reality is that we need more than one mentor throughout our careers. We need many different mentors for many different things. We not only need different mentors over time as our careers grow and change, we also need different mentors at the same time.

Again, easier said than done, right? Well, not if you play your cards right.

You probably aren’t close friends with the all the people you spent every weekend with in high school anymore. Why not? Because you’ve changed a lot since high school, that’s why—you have an adult life with adult responsibilities. And just like you’ve moved on from several of your old high school friends, the close confidants you have at your current job or career stage may not be able to relate to you a decade down the road when you’re navigating the complex issues a top manager or executive faces, either.

Mentors are human—they have their own strengths and weaknesses, just like you do. They grow and change, just like you do. And the people you look up to as role models now might not be the role model you want a decade or even a year from now. Or you may find yourself needing help in a pinch for a unique business or personal situation that your current mentor has no concept of.

You Need a Team

This is where having a team of mentors, rather than just one, can come in handy. Take it from me—I once relied on only one professional mentor. But I soon found I needed more than that. So I eventually evolved past having just one mentor to having what I like to call a Personal Board of Advisors.

My advisors come from many different walks of life. Some are young—even students—while some are my age or older. Some work in my field, and some come from other fields. Some are still working, and some are retired. In all cases, though, they have a certain type of expertise or experience that I’m lacking—whether it’s a deep trove of professional contacts, financial acumen, the ability to speak frankly about difficult topics, or wisdom gained from many years of experience. (Or in the cases of my young/student advisors, it’s often youthful energy and a better understanding of new technologies like Snapchat, Periscope, or other emerging social-media platforms.) This allows me to have a variety of people I can choose from when I need specific advice about different topics at different times.

In this way, my personal board of advisors is similar to the boards of directors that advise CEOs at major corporations. Corporations make a point to build advisory boards where each member contributes according to a different specialty or strength. Why not have the same kind of board for your professional and personal development?

As my own personal board of advisors illustrates, not all mentors are gray-haired businessmen in drab suits. They are young and old, male and female, working and retired, in your industry and outside it.

Your own Personal Board of Advisors is out there, waiting to help you. You just need to go out and find them, and build those relationships. (Be prepared to mentor them in return, too—a big part of relationship-building is reciprocity.)

Cultura Ambassador – UNAS United Interview Tips

 

We are delighted to present this great video from three of our Silicon Valley Latino Cultura Ambassadors, Arlene Mendoza, Claudia Hernandez and Janeth Larios Medina, founders of UNAS United. We love the way they took an instructional video and provided great tips while making it entertaining and humorous. Thanks for putting this together for our “Chicas” who are looking to make a move!

Share your thoughts on these tips with us!

Breaking News! Guillermo Diaz Jr. named CIO at Cisco

 

Silicon Valley Latino is delighted to report that earlier today Guillermo Diaz Jr. was announced as Cisco’s CIO!

Guillermo Diaz Cover PhotoThis is big news for the Latino community and especially for all of our Latino youth who aspire to be Latinos in Tech!  Over the past few years Silicon Valley Latino has developed a close relationship with Guillermo and we have learned that he is the real deal as it relates to being an inspiring leader. We have had the opportunity to meet with many of those on his teams at Cisco as well as with members of Conexion (Cisco’s Latino employee resource organization – Guillermo serves as their executive sponsor). The respect, enthusiasm and collaboration that he inspires are clearly evident. The same can be said for those he touches and works with in the community, just ask the folks at HITEC, Sacred Heart Nativity Schools, Cristo Rey High School and so many others.  As for us at Silicon Valley Latino, the connection was instant and we were inspired by his actions immediately. He was actually the person that inspired the name for our “Inspire Higher Tour” initiative. Guillermo’s phrase for 2014 was “Inspire Higher” and our CEO, Alex Ontiveros, was so moved by how Guillermo evangelized this phrase that we asked him if we could use it for a special initiative that we had in mind, of course the answer was yes. His phrase for 2015 has been “Inspire Exponentially” and it has clearly taken affect with many including us at Silicon Valley Latino.

 

Guillermo is deeply committed to his work as a technology expert, to being an inspiring and effective leader to his teams. However the element that we appreciate the most about him is his commitment to the Latino community especially our youth. Guillermo we congratulate you on today’s promotion to CIO at Cisco! It’s a very well earned accomplishment. We thank you for being an inspiring leader to many of us and for your commitment to inspiring the next generation of Latino heroes!

1012968_494878680660822_2038759494468558812_n

 

We believe this is truly a well-earned promotion based on his numerous professional accomplishments and trajectory as well as the various awards and honors that he has earned over his career. We are also excited to see how he will help take Cisco to the next level by inspiring others exponentially. Adelante!

 

Make My Quince modernizes the planning of your Quince!

 

What’s your elevator pitch? What problem you trying to solve?

  • MakeMyQuince is the first to bring online event planning and crowd funding to Quinceañeras. Our goal as a company is to build trust and provide great customer service to the Latinos; our entry point to the Latino market is through Quinceañeras. A Quinceañera is a once in a lifetime event and Make My Quince creates their solution of guiding Quinceañeras and their parents through the planning and funding of their family event.

Team Intro Kick-OffHow do you see your start-up disrupting the space it’s in? What type of impact do you envision your start-up having in the market? What inspired you to do your start-up? 

  • Make My Quince is taking planning tools, such as visualization, checklists, and budgeting, and bringing them together with the option to padrino fund items needed to create the perfect Quince event. We used the idea of padrino sponsors used traditionally by some Quinceañeras and applied it to our event planning service. Make My Quince is disrupting the way Quinceañeras and their families plan one of the most important events their families will celebrate and refining it to be available online or moblie. Latinos (teens and their parents) are already online and on mobile; Latinos are early adopters to new tech trends and top engagers on social platforms. The Latino market is a starving market as well as one of the most influential in purchasing power. Make My Quince strives to provide great service to our users and exceed their expectations in the planning of a Quinceañera.
  • Our inspiration behind Make My Quince stems from our experiences with Quinceañera events. Families are currently planning Quinceañeras the same way they did 20 years ago; we see Make My Quince making this planning process more efficient and fun. We also have the vision to use Make My Quince to empower Latino teens and their parents to practice skills such as budgeting, fundraising, and decision-making together as a family.

venturescape MMQ team

Is this your first start-up venture? How did your team come together?

  • Our team has a variety of individual professional and personal experiences and have all attempted entrepreneurship in the past. Make My Quince is the first start-up we have worked together on as a team.
  • Our team met at StartUp Weekend Sacramento in November 2014. Co-founder Fatima Ruiz pitched the idea of “crowdfunding for Quinceañeras” and as a team we developed a business plan, revenue streams, brand identity and won 2nd place that weekend. We have continued as a team since November 2014. We have had three focus groups and each one lead to big “AHA” moments – these have shaped our direction and validated the need and desire for our service.

 

How has your startup journey been so far?

  • After winning second place as StartupWeekend Sacramento in November, our team came together weekly to work on our project “Make My Quince”. We did not think that less than five months later we would be pitching Make My Quince, now an incorporated start-up, to serial entrepreneurs and leaders in the Silicon Valley. We have received great feedback and excitement from our daily interactions in pitching Make My Quince as well as learned what our users want from us. Our users want guidance on one of the biggest events of her life, while having the independence to make her event her own and Make My Quince will make this happen.

 

What would you like to achieve during your time with Manos?

  • We are communicating with users on a daily basis and adjusting our features to make them the best they can be for our users. We hope to have Make My Quince ready to be tested as an application and redesign our website. We also are looking for key Quinceañera vendor partnerships. Our first month at Manos Accelerator has been very enlightening. The access to a great network of mentors and networks have been influential in shaping our direction as well confirming the problem we are solving as Make My Quince.

 

What type of funding are you looking for?

  • We are currently looking for bridge funding of $500,000 for the development of two application and new user acquisition.

 

If you are part of a Latino owned startup and would like to be featured and connect with our Cultura Ambassadors please reach out to us via our website or any of our social media channels.

 

 

Jeff Camarillo – SVL Cultura Ambassador

 

Camarillo is currently the founding Director/Principal of the Luis Valdez Leadership Academy, a new college-prep charter high school in East San Jose, managed by the Foundation for Hispanic Education. Through education, Camarillo’s father and hero, Professor Al Camarillo, was able to break the cycle of poverty in his family and open countless doors for students and faculty at Stanford University and beyond to explore the history and identity of Mexican-Americans and other ethnic Americans. His example inspired Camarillo to work tirelessly for the past 14 years to enhance the educational opportunities for young people from disadvantaged urban communities throughout California.

LVLA_DSC0023BAfter graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, Camarillo entered the classroom as an 8th grade U.S. History teacher at Vanguard Learning Center in Compton Unified School District. He also coached boy’s basketball, football and baseball. After three of the most amazing years of his life, Camarillo realized that it was time to advance his teacher repertoire and pedagogical understanding and returned to the San Francisco Bay Area to attend Stanford University’s Teacher Education Program (STEP) for his Master’s degree and teaching credential.  While at Stanford, Camarillo was introduced to a progressive non-profit organization called the Mural, Music and Arts Project (MMAP), an economic and education empowerment program that seeks to inspire teens in East Palo Alto, CA through the arts.  After serving as an education specialist for MMAP, he began in 2005 as the director of MMAP’s Teen Mural Program, a position he held every summer through 2009.  During and immediately after his time at STEP, Camarillo taught 9th and 10th grade Humanities and served as the founding Athletic Director at the June Jordan School for Equity in San Francisco. In 2006, Camarillo returned to Compton and continued teaching 7th/8th grade history at the school where he began his career, where he taught and coached from 2006-2010. In 2006, Camarillo, along with his younger brother Greg, a former NFL wide receiver, founded a non-profit program called Charging Forward, a mentoring program that sought to reward student-athletes in Compton for their accomplishments in the classroom and respective athletic endeavors.

 

In 2010, Camarillo began his career as a school leader at the East Palo Alto Academy (EPAA). As the school’s Asst. Principal, Camarillo helped reduce school suspensions by over 40% and created a positive, college going climate for the students and families of the EPAA community. During his first year at EPAA, Camarillo served as a Teaching Ambassador Fellow for the United States Department of Education, where he sought to help bridge the disconnect between the formulation of federal educational policy and on the ground practice in urban schools. In 2012, Camarillo began the Educational Leadership Program at San Jose State University, where he graduated with a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership and an administrative credential in 2014.

In 2014, Camarillo was provided the once in a lifetime opportunity to become the Founding Director/Principal of the Luis Valdez Leadership Academy (LVLA), a position he currently holds. Under Camarillo’s leadership, LVLA has enjoyed a suspension free school year, and the creation a college-going, culturally vibrant climate. The school’s mission promotes culturally sustaining pedagogy, a focus on bi-literacy and preparation for four-year colleges and universities for 1st generation college students. In addition to giving birth to a new school, Camarillo and his life partner, Josephine, gave birth to their first-born child, a baby boy named Jaxson Albert. Camarillo is also a proud son of Al and Susan Camarillo, a Stanford professor and retired school counselor. He is a big brother to Greg, a retired NFL wide receiver and Lauren, a Spanish teacher at Willow Glen High School.

SmileyGo bringing smiles to Nonprofits & Corporations

 

SmileyGo (smileygo.org)

  1. What’s your elevator pitch? What problem are you trying to solve?

SmileyGo (www.smileygo.org) is the tech platform that is integrating the corporate world with the nonprofit sector, matching the philanthropic needs of a company with the requests of a nonprofit. We are creating opportunities to bring positive results in the fulfillment of CSR efforts and societal needs across the globe.

So, what is the problem? Nonprofits spend more than 40% of their time plus an allocated percentage of their budget on fundraising, which often distracts them from focusing on their mission. At the same time, companies spend a tremendous amount of time and money on PR and marketing, often searching for nonprofit alliances and community outreach opportunities to align their brand with. This diverts their focus from meeting and exceeding their customer’s needs and expectations. Ultimately, Corporate Philanthropy is difficult work and that is why we are working on a product that will automate and facilitate this process, while maximizing social impact on a global scale.

Via SmileyGo, we are streamlining the CSR process and helping companies do philanthropy more efficiently, via our low-cost, online platform, while generating greater social impact and smiles around the world.

SmileyGo at Manos Accelerator launch

  1. Is this your first start-up venture?

SmileyGo is the first for-profit global venture for many of us. Having a diverse team working together to solve a global problem, we all bring different experiences to our team, and most importantly, we all share a passion for helping others make the world a better place. Pedro started a non-profit when he was 16 during high school: www.yatayperu.com, a social enterprise connects teachers in American Schools in Peru with local Andean children in the highlands. Michael also founded two ventures, Conservosmart, a solution for kWh usage within homes, and MultiSite Professional (http://www.multisiteprofessional.com), a reliable, personal option for website development. Maria who is passionate about civic technology founded encire in 2014, which is an online platform that connects users to key information on the issues that affect their social, political, and economic lives. Dante founded esQela.org last year, an ed-tech platform to empower Latino students in their Quest to attaining higher education. By working together, we leverage our passions and experiences to develop a unique solution to making it easier for companies to make smart investments with long-lasting social impact.

  1. What inspired you to do your start-up?

The SmileyGo Team shares an innate desire to help others at a global scale. We all possess the SmileyGo DNA: passion, drive, and energy. We all have a passion to help others, the drive to revolutionize corporate philanthropy, and the energy that is required to change the world. In particular, the life experiences of Pedro David Espinoza and Dante Alvarado-Leon revolved around giving back to their communities. Both having lived in developing countries in Latin America saw the need to create solutions to help those in need and took action at a young age. Pedro’s main inspiration came from looking at all of the opportunities and positive impact his mother’s nonprofit created for young women in Peru. When he met Juana, a young woman from the Anders region of Peru, who told him that her future was going to work on a farm, Pedro and his mother helped her and opened the door for many opportunities for her. In the end, Juana enrolled in a higher education institution and graduated as an engineer. Similarly, Dante was inspired by the stories of children he met at an orphanage that he volunteered with his family in Mexico. Dante recalls the words of one of the children in an orphanage in the city Tijuana who told him, “I want to be like you and help those in my community when I grow up.” Ever since that day, Dante continued to give back to his community through service and by using his education to help those around him. These two stories combined with the diverse backgrounds of all of the members of the SmileyGo team led to the creation of SmileyGo, a global venture aiming to stimulate companies to give back to nonprofits at a global scale.

4.  How do you see your start-up disrupting the space it’s in?

SmileyGo is taking the lead in showing that companies as a whole can give back in a meaningful way that has a lasting impact. Other organizations may encourage individual employees to go volunteer or make donations toward a certain non-profit. However, at SmileyGo we want to make sure that companies – not just the individuals that comprise it – are socially responsible and that the resources being donated are being used properly. We strive for a simple, straightforward process that creates transparency. This transparency won’t only be helpful for consumers and companies, but will hopefully get non-profit organizations to effectively allocate and manage resources. Ultimately, we wish to revolutionize the way business is done, and prove to the corporate world that business is not only about making revenue, but it is also about creating impact, and that companies can do well by doing good.

  1. What type of impact do you envision your start-up having in the market?

We see SmileyGo as the catalyst for companies to do well, while maximizing social impact worldwide. By directing philanthropy toward charities and non-profits that will effectively use it, we aim to encourage more corporations to give back to communities in need around the world. Here at SmileyGo we are revolutionizing the way business is conducted. We want to make companies more aware of the needs of the world, and make it easy for them to become catalysts of change. Essentially, we are streamlining the process for both the non-profits and companies and helping them collaborate to help each other out. By matching the requests and needs of a non-profit with the resources and funding of a company via our tech platform, we will be able to foster a win-win situation and help companies make smart investments that will have long-lasting impacts on the non-profits.

  1. How did your team come together?

The co-founders, Pedro David Espinoza and Dante Alvarado-Leon brought together a diverse and talented team that shares the same vision and passion for a global cause. SmileyGo naturally attracts those who are passionate about corporate social responsibility and want to see a change in the way businesses give back to society, help non-profits in their struggle for resources, or a combination of the two. Our team is comprised of students from around the world, from the U.S., Mexico, Colombia, China, India, Africa and many other places. Most of us met at the University of California, Berkeley, and since then we have become a family of student leaders and young entrepreneurs with the vision to change the world, the heart to help others, and the spirit to dream big.

  1.     How has your startup journey been so far?

The start-up journey has been quite a thrill thus far. We are always making progress, but the progress has been far from anything like a straight, upward line towards success. The journey has been filled with twists, turns, loops and sometimes backtracking too. But through the entire process, we learn more about our company’s goal as a whole and have a deeper understanding of what we need to implement to create the best possible product. We are not the typical startup that rushes, seeks money and never sleeps. We rest, we bond, we are a family of winners, students, young leaders and learners. We have had to make many sacrifices to develop and create a global solution to corporate philanthropy, however, we have a passion for what we are doing that drives us to keep on going. To sum it up, our journey so far has been one of the best experiences in our lives. All of the work we put in every day, all the miles we have traveled together, and all of the time we have spent together to make our idea come to life has shown us that SmileyGo is our passion. We, the SmileyGoers, all share a common dream to work together as a family of young leaders and entrepreneurs. At the end of the day, we want to inspire and encourage others, especially our generation to dare to dream big, to be innovative, and to embark on their own entrepreneurial journeys to develop solutions to the challenges that we are facing today, while always remembering to smile.

  1. What would you like to achieve during your time with Manos?

During out time in the Manos Accelerator, we hope to achieve a clear direction in which we will head, so we bring to clarity to the problem we are solving, the solution we are providing, and how we can be sustainable throughout the process. At the moment, we are working towards developing an attractive, innovative, and concrete business plan that will allows to develop an efficient platform. One thing that Manos has definitely helped our company with–as a result of mentors and the number of resources we’ve been given–is setting a stable and simple foundation for what we aim to do and how we will implement an effective plan to create our tech platform to produce greater social change. By Demo Day, we hope to have a working and updated prototype so that we can begin connecting the corporate world with the nonprofit sector.

  1.     What type of funding are you looking for?

We are looking for seed funding, so that we can build the most efficient and reliable tech platform and stimulate our progression with SmileyGo. By the end of the summer we will possibly look for angel investments, if needed.

 

If you are part of a Latino owned startup and would like to be featured and connect with our Cultura Ambassadors please reach out to us via our website or any of our social media channels.