Illinois ALPFA Chapter Named Midwest Region Student Chapter of the Year

The University of Illinois student chapter of the Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA) has been selected as the winner of the Midwest Region Student Chapter of the Year. They were presented with a banner commemorating this recognition at the 2017 ALPFA Convention held in Las Vegas in early August.

ALPFA Award 2017
Christian Figueroa (left) receives the banner recognizing the Illinois ALPFA chapter as the 2017 Midwest Region Student Chapter of the Year at the ALPFA Convention in Las Vegas. Pictured with him are Yvonne Garcia, chair of the ALPFA board of directors, and Charlie Garcia, CEO of ALPFA. Photo courtesy of ALPFA.

ALPFA is the oldest Latino professional organization with over 81,000 members. There are 44 professional and more than 160 student chapters across the United States. ALPFA’s vision is to be the premier business organization for expanding opportunities for Latino leadership in the global market.

The chapters receiving regional awards were recognized for their exemplary commitment to ALPFA’s mission through their local impact, programs, engagement, membership growth, regional participation, and national support.

“Winning the 2017 Midwest Regional Chapter of the Year serves as motivation for us to continue growing and fulfilling our mission to empower Latino leaders,” said Christian Figueroa, president of the University of Illinois chapter. “We all believe in this mission and have tried to do our part to give back and support our members and local communities.”

The Illinois chapter has had an increasingly important impact on the life of the College of Business. Over the past two years, the ALPFA Illinois chapter has more than doubled its student membership through its recruiting efforts and through its Latino student mentorship program. In spring 2017, the ALPFA chapter hosted the ALPFA Midwest Regional Symposium. This event is entirely student organized, and the end result was extremely successful in terms of size and participation. Twenty universities and colleges sent participants to the conference, and there were eight workshops provided on such topics as “Leveraging Your Latino Values to Build Your Personal Brand,” “Effective Listening,” “Building a Foundation for Success,” and “Lead without a Title: How Anyone, Anywhere Can Make a Positive Difference.” Among the list of distinguished speakers were State of Illinois Lieutenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti and State Senator Martin Sandoval.

The chapter also co-sponsors International Day and the Spring Diversity Banquet, events that highlight diversity and inclusion. It was the lead organizer for community service events such as the Compete for a Cure and relay for Life, it provide literacy support to local Latino children.

The chapter is particularly noteworthy for its High School Outreach program, which targets predominantly Latino high schools in Chicago. Forty students are invited down for a weekend during which these students experience workshops with e ALPFA’s corporate sponsors, have an informal case completion, and introduce the participants to life in the College of Business.

“I would encourage everyone of all backgrounds to see what opportunities ALPFA has available,” said Figueroa. “It is an organization that can truly make a significant impact to so many people’s lives.”