Michael Dell, CEO of Dell Computer Corporation, addressed a crowd of educators, students and parents Thursday, Oct. 18 during a forum, which concluded activities for Hispanic Engineering Science and Technology Week (HESTEC) at The University of Texas-Pan American.
Dell - who founded the company in 1984 with $1,000 and an unprecedented idea in the computer industry - spoke about his experiences in the technology field and his road to success during an interview setting given by UTPA Student Ambassador Amanda Garza, and UTPA Foundation Board Member Jaime Ramon.
"I found my passion when I was 19 years old," said Dell about his decision to leave school at The University of Texas-Austin and pursue his dream in the computer business. "For some people it takes years to find their passion, and others never do. What I felt was an enormous sense of opportunity."
Afterwards, audience members were given the opportunity to speak to Dell during an informal question and answer session. They asked questions ranging from strategies that have lead his company to become one of the most successful in the country to his advice on education.
"I think educators play a special role in imparting knowledge and skills. There are opportunities that can link teachers, students and parents by using technology," he said. "Embrace these tools. Don't be afraid of them. And make sure teachers get the appropriate training along with students."
UTPA Freshman Joe Ochoa said the event was a great opportunity for students to listen to someone who has followed his dreams and accomplished his goals.
"Hearing these people speak inspires people, and it gives us a sense that we can succeed," Ochoa said. "I'm glad that I'm part of this University."
Dell was awarded with the Hispanic Humanitarian Award and presented with a sculpture made by UTPA Art Student Rene Garza.