MBA organizations to host mini-conference Feb. 26 at UTPA
Posted: 02/10/2005
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The University of Texas-Pan American MBA Association (MBAA) in collaboration with the McAllen chapter of the National Society of Hispanic MBAs (NSHMBA) will host a mini-conference Feb. 26 at the Student Union.

The conference, the first for both groups, is titled "Embracing Growth & Opportunities in the RGV: Connecting Current & Future Leaders" and will focus on issues specific to the Rio Grande Valley.

"The mission of the UTPA MBAA is to create an atmosphere that is conducive to the professional and personal development of its members. This mini-conference is a novice effort of the part of our association to showcase the MBA alumni that have reached certain heights in their careers and use them as role models to encourage career advancement for the current MBA students," said Jayshree Bhat, UTPA graduate student and president of the UTPA MBAA. Bhat said she hoped the event inspires members to take a greater part in local industry and business affairs.

MBAA and NSHMBA members planning a joint Feb. 26 conference at UTPA on growth and leadership in the Rio Grande Valley include from front left to right Lourdes Servantes, NSHMBA chapter president; Imelda Leal, NSHMBA chapter executive vice president; Eunice Garcia, NSHMBA chapter program officer of media relations; and Jayshree Bhat, MBAA president. Rear left to right are Gilbert Gonzalez, NSHMBA vice president for education; Matt Ruszczak, MBAA vice president; and Isaac Sagredo, MBAA chairman of the board.
NSHMBA is a non-profit organization that encourages career progression to the highest levels, providing direction and leadership to companies in recruiting and developing talented Hispanic business professionals. In line with the organization's national goals, the chapter is focused on increasing the enrollment of Hispanics in undergraduate and graduate management programs,providing networking opportunities, and promoting business leadership and entrepreneurial skills in order to provide the cultural awareness and sensitivity that is crucial in today's diverse workforce.

A "NSHMBAA Lunch and Learn Session" sponsored by Wal-Mart will kick off the daylong conference at 11 a.m. in the UTPA Student Union. Keynote speaker is Al Serrano, senior vice president of operations at Wal-Mart.

Other presenters include Dr. Cynthia Brown and Dr. Goykce Soydemir, faculty members of the UTPA College of Business Administration; Richard Vela, chief financial officer, La Joya ISD; Alonso Cantu, owner, Cantu Construction; G.M. Adams, chief operating officer, Renaissance Hospital; Edna Desaro Perez, vice president of business development, Lone Star National Bank; and Keith Patridge, executive vice president, McAllen Economic Development Corporation.

Topics will focus on industry growth, new opportunities for business graduates and challenges faced by local businesses. Any organizations seeking top Hispanic business professionals will be encouraged to set up information tables in order to distribute career-related opportunities to attendees. Announcements of upcoming association activities, scholarship information and community involvement initiatives will also be discussed during the conference, which will conclude at 4:30 p.m.

The conference, which is free and open to the public, will also feature door prizes and awards. The "NSHMBAA Lunch and Learn Session" is open to pre-registered attendees only, so reservations are highly recommended. To R.S.V.P., e-mail or log on to Sponsorship opportunities are available for the event. For sponsorship or other information, contact MBAA at 956/369-1021 or NSHMBA at 956/453-6482.