Hispanic Heritage Foundation and Trinity University Hosted 2023 National LOFT Leadership Institute Summit in San Antonio

San Antonio, TX, July 26, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) and Trinity University launched the National LOFT (Latinos on Fast Track) Leadership Institute (LLI) Summit 2023, July 19 through July 23, at Trinity University in San Antonio. Approximately 200-mostly-rising first-year college students from across the country joined together for the Summit, which focused on leadership, community-building, professional networking, social impact, culture, and a deep dive into their learning sectors which included sustainability, education, engineering, entrepreneurship, finance and business, healthcare, science, media entertainment, public service and social justice, and technology.

Community leaders and corporate representatives provided guidance and inspiration to the participants, but, more importantly, the youth provided guidance and inspiration through the sessions, which included “open space” to tap into their priorities, vision, and problem-solving.

“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,” said Juan Sepulveda, J.D., the Ron Calgaard Distinguished Professor of Practice in political science at Trinity University, HHF Board member, and co-founder of the LLI.

“We are simply facilitating and are actually counting on and pushing the LLI Fellows (students) to lead actionably on their terms,” added Antonio Tijerino of HHF and co-founder of LLI. “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.”

HHF captured ideas, content, and data from the LLI Summit for a report, which will serve as a youth-focused set of priorities, vision, and solutions for the Latino community and America. Southwest Airlines provided flights for the LLI Fellows, staff, and organizers.

Open Space is a process designed to put the power in the hands of the Fellows, not the organizers, to leverage their priorities, vision, experiences, and talents with no hierarchies. The Fellows were responsible for identifying specific topics, issues, and questions they wanted to explore and share with their colleagues, creating the agenda, and placing it on a virtual grid for everyone to see. They also self-selected, presented ideas, and led open conversations on 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 the young leaders through an ongoing LOFT effort.

The LLI is a critical continuum to HHF’s 25-year-old Youth Awards program after more than 30,000 applicants from all 50 states and Puerto Rico were narrowed down to 300 recipients – 10 in each of the 10 sectors or “tracks.” As LOFT Institute Fellows, the Fellows will be tracked and connected to each other throughout college and into their careers with access to additional programs and training, resources, activities, mentors/mentees, and sector-specific career pathways, including internships and full-time positions.

The LLI was launched in 2021, and last year, The White House hosted the LOFT LLI “Open Space” summit in recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month. Hundreds of young leaders from across the nation returned to their schools and communities with a macro vision of impact and inspiration, an unforgettable experience, and a call to action. 

The 2023 National LOFT Leadership Institute Summit was open to mentors and speakers who wanted to share their educational and career experiences with this year’s young leaders, provide college advice and discuss any resources or opportunities available in their industry. 


Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) and Trinity University (Texas) Launched LOFT Summit 2023 LOFT Leadership Institute Summit Participants Discuss Important Issues

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