HLAA Newsletter | JUNE 2020

In this Edition:
A Message From Our Co-Presidents
Welcome Class of 2020
HLAA Board Spotlight: Jacob Barrera
Join HLAA Leadership
Supporting Our Community
Career Corner
Additional Resources
In the News


Dear HLAA Familia,

There is no denying that the last few months have been both challenging and exhausting. While many of us were still reckoning with the fact that Latinx and Black communities have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19, we were once again rattled by the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, and were sourly reminded of the precarious nature of Black life in America. Like so many of you, we, too, asked what we could do as a community. We began reflecting on our own internalized racial biases and recognizing the complicity we play in the systemic oppression of Black lives. But, no more! 

In our statement to the HLAA community, we said:

“The Harvard Latino Alumni Alliance mourns with our familia. We stand with you in denouncing police brutality, state-sanctioned oppression, and racist violence. We join you in demanding justice. We urge our members to remain civically engaged in the call for accountability and to combat anti-blackness wherever it exists, including within our community.” 

In an ongoing effort to educate ourselves and our communities about anti-Blackness and anti-racism we have partnered with Black, Native American, and Asian alumni colleagues and are developing joint programming and discussions - ideas welcome.  We continue to advocate for the Ethnic Studies Faculty search and the establishment of an Ethnic Studies program. Now, more than ever, Ethnic Studies is an important pedagogical lens with which to dismantle the white supremacy that permeates elite universities. For insight on Harvard's lack of curricular and faculty diversity, check out this Crimson article,"A Black Box: Harvard Affiliates Debate the University's Tenure System".

In an ongoing act of unity, HLAA and 25 other student and alumni groups signed a new amicus brief in the admissions lawsuit, filed with the court of appeals by our attorneys at NAACP LDF. Jin Hee Lee, our lead lawyer, said, “It is an honor to continue representing this multi-racial coalition of student and alumni organizations who know firsthand why it is vitally important for Harvard to continue fostering racial and ethnic diversity on its campus.”

In May, we honored and welcomed the Class of 2020 to the alumni community at the first-ever virtual Harvard LatinXcellence Celebration! Thank you to those who joined us for a special time en familia. Our new grads are looking to us for career support in this difficult time, so if you would like to connect with Latinx/FirstGen students, PLEASE sign up to be an Alumni Career Advisor.

Amidst these trying times, yesterday, June 18, 2020 was a day of celebration for many in our community! In a historic 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court of the United States rejected the Trump administration’s attempt to end the DACA program. There is still much work to be done and we must remain civically engaged to ensure the viability of DACA.

We are grateful for our HLAA family. Your passion, dedication, and resilience inspire us every day. We welcome your feedback and suggestions - please do not hesitate to reach out via Facebook, Instagram, or email.


On behalf of the HLAA National Board of Directors,

Jacob Barrera MPH’18 & Shirley Cardona AB’06 & MBA’12



Thank you for joining the LatinXcellence Celebration Honoring the Class of 2020!

If you were unable to join or would like to re-watch the event featuring speakers such as Dean Maritza Rodriguez, Professor David Carrasco, and Professor Lorgia Garcia Pena, you can access the recording on our Facebook page

We are excited to introduce some of the new faces of our Latinx alumni familia. Welcome to HLAA!






Jacob Barrera, MPH '18

   Co-President, Harvard Latino Alumni Alliance

Jacob Barrera is first-generation, queer, Latinx and a rising 2L at UC Hastings College of the Law. Prior to law school, Jacob was a research project and data assistant at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health researching policies aimed at slowing the growth in health care expenditures and improving value. Additionally, he worked on research with Harvard Law School’s Center for Health Law and Policy Innovation focusing on health insurers’ pricing strategies for HIV drugs. His professional interests include health equity, health care law, health care business and regulation, and pharmaceutical policy and regulation. Currently, Jacob is a Summer Fellow for the Center for Business Law at UC Hastings assisting in bankruptcy research and a Research Assistant conducting research on adolescent health care decision making and the law. Jacob received his Master of Public Health in Health Policy from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. He currently serves as the 2018 Harvard Chan Class President and the Co-President of the Harvard Latino Alumni Alliance.




We are actively looking for alums & students with enthusiasm and desire to join our national HLAA leadership team. Fill in your interest in this link, where you can find detailed descriptions of positions. 





Harvard RAZA Ballet Folklorico needs your help! Unfortunately, the Ballet Folklorico group has lost all of their vestuarios and memorabilia due to another group accidentally throwing it all away. Ballet Folklorico asks for alumni support recuperating memorabilia and vestuarios by either providing alumni contacts or donating to the Ballet Folklorico fund.

Venmo: @GonzErick, Phone Number: 414-243-6280, ericktorresgonzalez@college.harvard.edu


A Harvard Latina college graduate recently removed herself and her siblings from an abusive home in the Bay Area. They're trying to raise funds to find a new apartment and get counseling services. Please consider helping her through this link.


Check our NEW "Our Community" page on our website to see all the listed Latinx Faculty and Staff across all schools at Harvard University.
Please provide us feedback at harvardlatinoalum@gmail.com about whether you find this resource helpful, and let us know if any Latinx Faculty & Staff member is missing in our list.





We are launching our HLAA Webinar Series! Our Latinx alumni events strive to promote community, connection, and career success for Harvard Latinx alumni and current Latinx students.

Webinar #1: Alumni Spotlight: Diversifying Entertainment

Sat, June 27 @ 2pm EDT/11am PDT Register Here

Only 4.5% of speaking roles in the 100 top-grossing films from 2007 to 2018 featured Latinx actors. Unsurprisingly, only 3% of producers and casting executives during that time period were Latinx. Join us for a conversation with alumni who are working to change who is writing the stories and leading from both in front of and behind the camera in our current media landscape. Felipe Tewes, Director of International Originals at Netflix, AB ’06, and Julie Ann Crommett, Vice President of Multicultural Audience Engagement at Walt Disney Studios, AB ’08, will share how they entered this field, what's next, and why it's a priority. HLAA VP of Reunions, Glenda M. Aldana Madrid, AB '07, and HLAA HGSE Representative, Isamar Vega, AB '13 & EdM '19, will moderate the conversation. Participants will gain insight into the field of entertainment, learn our panelists’ trajectory, and engage in a Q&A session.

Webinar #2: Latinx Alumni Vision & Advocacy Efforts 

Mon, July 13 @ 8pm EDT/ 5pm PDT - Register Here

Participate in a stimulating discussion with current Latinx board members as they work to grow HLAA, advocate on behalf of current students, and increase LatinXcellence across the country. Learn from President Emeritus Ed Rocha AB'06 about how to go from being a Latinx student activist to an alumni leader within an elite institution. HLAA board leaders will talk about the board's 2020 vision including the fight for Ethnic Studies, our demand for more Latinx faculty hiring, our collaboration with fellow Harvard SIGs, and our upcoming inaugural Harvard Latino Alumni Reunion in fall of 2021. Learn what collective power alumni have at Harvard; how we advocate for issues impacting Latinos in higher education; and what you can do to get more involved and make a difference in your alma mater.

Webinar #3: Leveraging your Networks Authentically 

Thur, July 30 @ 6pm EDT/ 3pm PDT - Register Here

In this workshop, you will hear from HLAA President, Shirley Cardona AB’06, MBA’12 and VP of Finance, Albert Maldonado MTS’14 about how they’ve learned to leverage their networks. The power and influence of the global Harvard alumni network of over 375,000 motivates many to study at Harvard. How can you maximize the potential of this incredible network, and your other networks, both personally and professionally? What does networking mean beyond the context of cocktail hours and job hunting? What does effective networking look like and sound like? How do you bring your whole authentic self to the networking experience?




Join this webinar to learn about ways to improve your LinkedIn profile for first-gen students and alumni!
Thursday, June 18, 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM EDT. Register here.





J103093072_659557531294324_1300918381020502353_ooin Harvard Business School Latino Alumni Association in a virtual case experience on Thursday, June 25 at 4pm ET! This will be led by HBS Professor Jose Alvarez and discuss the COVID-19 impact on the food supply chain. José Alvarez has written extensively about the global food system and retailing since he joined the HBS faculty in 2009. Prior to HBS, Mr. Alvarez was President and Chief Executive Officer of Stop & Shop/Giant-Landover from April 2006 through July 2008. Register here.



Join Friday, June 26, at 2pm EST Register here. 



USS Cyber Inc. 
A Blockchain company is looking to hire a legal professional to assist with formulating engaging and legally accurate content in the areas of Blockchain, Terms of Use, Privacy statements, and legal articles.  
The person will be in charge of:
  • Creating and maintaining legal documents/pages for our websites (content only as in text)
  • Reviewing and updating project Whitepaper and Litepapers 
  • Create articles of a legal nature 
  • Assist with contract preparation 
  • Assist Senior legal team with content adjustment of contracts and website content 
The successful candidate will have the opportunity to gain invaluable legal and technical knowledge in the areas of blockchain technology on an international scale, as well as the option to grow with the firm. Submit interest to michel.pacifico@usscyber.com
Harvardwood Summer Certificate Program
In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Harvardwood Summer Certificate Program in Southern California has been designed to capture many of the educational, professional, and social benefits of our traditional internship program. We are excited to offer even greater access to opportunities for students and recent grads in any location to work on virtual projects at home, and attend exclusive seminars from some of our most accomplished alumni in entertainment this summer.  Read more about the program!
FBI Special Agent Panel Discussion & Information Session
Hear directly from FBI Special Agents working a myriad of investigative squads. Join the conference call to learn about the application and vetting process.
July 15, 2020 at 4:00pm ET. RSVP at erivera6@fbi.gov by July 8th. Space is limited. 

Click here for CDC Fellowship and Training Opportunities



Career Advisor Network (CAN!)
hlaa-can-adFirst Generation Harvard Alumni and HLAA have established the Career Adviser Network. The goal of this program is to connect alumni professionals with students to provide mentorship, advice, and access to employment opportunities.
To become an Alumni Career Advisor, please complete the following intake form. 
Crimson Careers
This is the centralized hub for jobs and internships available to Harvard students. If your organization is hiring, has an internship opportunity or a short-term project available, please post it on the Crimson Careers Job and Internship Database. Alumni can post openings for free and there is an option to promote remote work. Questions should be directed to ocsjobs@fas.harvard.edu.
Firsthand Advisers
The OCS Firsthand Advisers platform provides scheduling and connection tools to facilitate “flash mentoring.” Alumni can offer 30–60 minutes to engage in a mock interview, review a resume or CV, or have a career chat. Public service mentors are in particular demand. Need help registering? Email ocsrecep@fas.harvard.edu.
Harvard University Free Online Courses
Learn about the forces in American politics that seek to influence the electorate and shift the political landscape in the course Citizen Politics in America: Public Opinion, Elections, Interest Groups, and the Media by JFK School of Government Professor Thomas E. Patterson in a self-paced 4-week course provided by edX.



  • Applicants to the College Class of 2025 will no longer need to submit any standardized test scores: link

  • Supreme Court rules against Trump cancelation of DACA: link

  • Harvard Crimson investigative reporting into Harvard’s tenure promotion system: Our HLAA president, Shirley Cardona AB ‘06, MBA ‘12, provides a statement on HLAA’s stance: link

  • MBA Class of 2021 Application is Now Open! link

  • Hundreds of Harvard Law Students criticize plans for online semester: link
  • Ethnic studies hiring freeze causes outrage as new athletic director is announced

  • Lorgia Garcia Pena discusses why ethnic studies have never been more urgent: Link. 

  • Read the story of Latinx graduate, Juan Reynoso MPH/MUP '20, featured among one of Harvard stellar graduates in The Harvard Gazette: link

  Content and positions reflected by HLAA in this newsletter do not represent the President and Fellows of Harvard College, Harvard University, or the Harvard Alumni Association.