We are excited to share and reintroduce you to our newest Executive Cultura Ambassador, Maria Arteaga-Carrasco. Maria started being highlighted about 5 years ago as she was introduced as one of our Collegiate Cultura Ambassadors. Read about how Maria has become a dynamic individual with a passion for success and a heart full of determination both personally and for her family and friends.
In 2016, Maria graduated from San Jose State University with a bachelor's degree in business administration, with an emphasis in Marketing.
As the oldest of five siblings, a devoted mother of three sons, and a San Jose native, Maria cherishes her family roots and takes pride in being a first-generation American.
Maria's path to success was shaped by the diverse experiences of Mexican and U.S. cultures that surrounded her. Growing up, she faced the challenge of bridging the gap between her parents' heritage and the new world they embraced in the U.S. It was during her college years, while immersing herself in ethnic studies and other subjects, that Maria discovered a profound appreciation for her parents' courage and sacrifice in starting a new life in a foreign land, where the language and its customs were unfamiliar.
Driven by a desire to continue what her parents started, she continued to search for the betterment of life for her children and to make her parents proud, Maria embarked on her academic journey with the goal of earning a college degree. She saw this as an opportunity to lead by example and inspire her family, friends, and children to fearlessly embrace their new beginnings, to learn from mistakes, and evolve through self-discovery.
Among Maria's proudest moments this year was cheering on her older son's graduation from Evergreen Valley College, where he earned his AS degree in Engineering. He aspires of transferring to a CSU, possibly SJSU, to pursue electrical engineering. Her second son also graduated from high school and will begin his journey at Evergreen Community College, where he plans to study Business with a concentration in Finance, aspiring to become a future CFO. As for her youngest son, a talented enthusiast of media arts, the possibilities for his educational path are eagerly anticipated. Maria's own achievements as a college graduate have not only influenced her sons but have opened their minds to countless opportunities, a privilege not afforded to all children.
Over the past decade, Maria has devoted herself to the City of San Jose, serving in various capacities and demonstrating unwavering dedication. She recently secured a full-time, benefitted Senior Office Specialist position in the Department of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement (PBCE) within the building division. With her desire for challenges and a proactive approach to learning, Maria swiftly adapted to her role and pursued higher-class positions. This journey led her to the position of Principal Permit Specialist in 2021 and eventually to her current role as an Analyst I (ADU Ally) in 2022, where she stands as the sole City of San Jose ADU Ally.
In her capacity as Accessory Dwelling Units Ally, Maria serves as the primary point of contact for all City of San Jose customers with ADU inquiries. Fluent in Spanish, she provides invaluable support and coordination related to different types of ADUs while sharing her expertise through various presentations and translation services. Maria's commitment to community outreach is evident as she actively engages with diverse audiences, delivering insightful presentations to county offices and educational institutions, promoting the idea of ADUs as a vital housing solution.
Despite her remarkable journey, Maria has faced her share of challenges. After college, the job hunt proved to be more difficult than she had anticipated, requiring resilience and unwavering faith in her abilities. The echoes of imposter syndrome occasionally lingered, but Maria found strength in participating in the City of San José’s mentoring programs, networking with like-minded individuals, and connecting with those who shared similar struggles. Each obstacle became an opportunity for growth, and she remains committed to evolving and acquiring new skills. With her self-worth firmly established, Maria confidently negotiated her salary during her last two promotions, realizing her value as a professional shaped by her education and work experience.
In addition to her work, Maria takes comfort in reading books that advance her professional and personal development and being active through exercise.
She likes to lose herself in the warmth of Rom-Com movies in her free time to bring a little humor into her hectic schedule.
Maria Arteaga-Carrasco is a wonderful example of the strength of willpower, fortitude, with a desire to study and succeed. This is what we refer to as an SVL Latina Leader.
She anticipates to continue her professional development and is convinced that she will one day sit in a director's chair, having an impact on her community and encouraging others to pursue their aspirations.
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