With a lineup of inspirational and motivational speakers, and workshops aimed at helping students find their passion, Allan Hancock College will host the Young Educated Latina Leaders (YELL) Mujer Conference on Saturday, April 29. All female junior high, high school, and college students are invited to attend the free event that will run from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Marian Theatre on the college’s Santa Maria campus.
“The theme is be bold for change,” said Yvonne Teniente-Cuello, dean of student services. “We want students to leave feeling empowered and inspired to make a difference in their own lives and those of others.”
The event aims to encourage students to set higher educational goals by providing college and career guidance, as well as personalized stories of success. Hundreds of male high school and college students attended a YELL Conference geared toward male students in December 2016. Olympic boxer Carlos Balderas was one of the keynote speakers at the event.
“The YELL Conference is a unique and very uplifting event,” said Nohemy Ornelas, associate superintendent/vice president, Student Services at Hancock. “Students will walk away with the understanding they have the ability to succeed and achieve their dreams by attending a college, like Allan Hancock College.”
The list of speakers includes: Ornelas; Hilda Zacarías, a member of Allan Hancock College’s Board of Trustees; Hancock students Janet Cruz-Reyes and Valentina Alvarado; Aurora C. Lopez, a youth advocate and motivational speaker; and Courtney Plotts, Ph.Dc.
Plotts, a former foster youth who was arrested at the age of 13, will share techniques on how students can gain the courage for change. Lopez has spent more than a decade dedicated to leadership enrichment and the empowerment of youth of color and immigrant families.
Following the speakers, students will select two workshops to attend. The workshops cover a wide variety of topics including: building healthy relationships; pursuing careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields; mastering leadership skills; being an AB 540 student; careers in media and television; and careers in medicine.
“Each workshop will provide students with knowledge about important issues within the community, as well as how to pursue a college education or a certain career that interests them,” added Teniente-Cuello. “We want the speakers to empower the women, and the workshops to provide a clearer road map to success.”
During the event, students will receive hot breakfast and lunch, as well as a t-shirt, giveaways and prizes.
The college is offering to provide free transportation to and from the event for students in the Santa Ynez and Lompoc valleys, Guadalupe and Southern San Luis Obispo County.
Students, especially those who want transportation to the event, should register online as soon as possible.
To register online for the conference and/or transportation, visit www.hancockcollege.edu/YELL. For more information, please contact the Counseling office at (805) 922-6966 ext. 3293, or email firstname.lastname@example.org .