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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Draper Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month

CAMBRIDGE, MA –Draper Laboratory celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month with activities intended to foster promotional development for its employees as well as outreach that highlighted career and educational opportunities for Latino engineers in the region.

Draper’s Mes Latino celebration, which ran from Sept. 15 to Oct.15, also included a variety of events that highlighted Latino contributions to U.S. culture.

Activities at Draper included a presentation from Conexión, a mentorship program for professionals that was founded in Cambridge, which focused on the importance of networking to career development.

Draper employees also reached out beyond New England through participation in the MAES National Symposium, which ran from Oct. 5-8 in Oakland, Calif. MAES promotes education and leadership among Latino engineers and scientists.

Linda Fuhrman, a senior systems engineer at Draper, coordinated a series of workshops at the MAES conference that promoted New England as an attractive destination for Latinos seeking high-tech educational and career opportunities. Fuhrman presented two of the workshops, the first on networking and the second on financing graduate school. During the conference, MAES honored Antonio de la Serna, a digital design engineer at Draper and acting president of the local MAES chapter, with its Medalla de Oro, the organization’s highest honor.

“As a company, we are committed to welcoming and embracing diversity,” said Chris Yu, signal processing and communications group leader in engineering, who also leads the Diversity and Inclusion Initiative at Draper. “Activities such as the celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month are a way for us to recognize and celebrate our ethnic differences, and to promote a culture of inclusion.”

At its Cambridge headquarters, Draper also displayed information on posters and monitors about the heritage of Latino countries as well as prominent figures with Hispanic backgrounds from the Americas and Caribbean; and featured Latin-themed menus and music and dancing in its cafeteria.

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