Plenary Talk: On Mentoring and Living (Work)Life with Purpose, Authenticity, and Integrity
Location: Howard University, Washington, D.C.
As an Afro-Latina from a low-income, single-parent household, I grew up with very limited resources, inadequate mentors (if any), and no access to the seen-and-heard how-to’s of academic and professional success. While I succeeded at completing a Ph.D. program, that alone and my background did not automatically prepare me to be an effective mentor to women and minority students — neither did it prepare me for nor spare me from the systemic barriers that persist in the professoriate. In this presentation, I will share a few decisive moments and the experiences that helped me draft my own how-to’s. These emboldened me to choose a career path that allows me to do the things I am most passionate about and that lets me demonstrate what I really believe in, including the view that education serves to empower people and bring about social change.