HBSA supports secondary schools
On Friday, the Hispanic Business Student Association held a youth outreach program at UH where they encouraged students from various high schools to go to college.
Eric Flores, accounting junior and community relations director for HBSA, said one of the goals for this program is to reach students that would otherwise not have the opportunity to visit a college campus.
“We wanted to help the low social economic schools surrounding the area because the kids have this idea that because they’re in a low social economic high school, they don’t have the opportunity like other kids to succeed — to go to college,” Flores said. “We motivate them, share experiences of us in college and also just help them understand how college is essential to reach a goal, to reach a dream.”
The students were on the campus for most of the day and were given a tour of the University.
“The event is structured; first, we give a presentation and then we have a guest speaker,” Flores said.
“It was about obstacles, how people sometimes tell us what we can or can’t do. And we have that on our minds, ‘Oh, I’m not good at sports, so I’m not going to be good at sports,’ but sometimes it just takes … you (trying) it, you try that and you find out if you really are bad in that or you’re good.”
HBSA is not a stranger to community-related events, Flores said.
“We’re really focused on that, and that’s why I chose this position in particular because I like to give back to my community. It’s just something that makes me happy,” Flores said. “We actually care.”
Mariella de Alba Ortiz, faculty advisor and career development curriculum manager, said she felt the program is really important to reaching college-age students.
“I participated in that last year, and it’s such a great program because these kids — I mean at the end of the day they are like, ‘Wow, it’s the first time I get to come to college and see what it’s like,’” de Alba said.
For de Alba, HSBA is a unique organization because members are truly dedicated to their organization.
“They do so many things. For example they do the blood drive — all of them go give blood. So they are not just organizing, ‘Hey everyone come and do this.’ They really get their hands dirty and they get to work with everyone. They’re not just asking for money, they work for it,” De Alba said.
“It’s not just business center students and it’s not just Hispanic students. So they’re open for anyone on campus and they’re super welcoming to all of their new members, and they care for what they’re doing.”