Austin, TX (September 19, 2012) — Today, Central Texas welcomed its newest educationally-focused community organization to the Austin area. Latino Leaders of America (LLA) will focus its efforts on middle to high school level students in order to stress the importance of high school graduation, a college degree and the need for their leadership skills in their communities.
“Latino Leaders of America plans to become a viable and easily accessible resource for a traditionally underserved student segment in need of tools to help them succeed,” said LLA founder Javier Hernandez, a Sr. Deputy Sheriff with the Travis County Sheriff’s Office and a School Resource Officer at Decker Middle School in Manor. “Hispanics are the largest segment of the Texas students population and remain the fastest growing school-aged segment in Texas — with Latinas making up the majority of that demographic. If the state is to remain an economic and employment leader, we must educate and graduate as much of this population as possible.”
LLA’s goals include, increased enrollment in middle school and high school Advanced Placement (AP) courses, increased enrollment in two and four year colleges and universities, increased participation in external academic or professional educational programs, as well as increased parental participation in the education of LLA participants.
The organization plans on meeting these goals by focusing on Latino and Latina youth between 6th and 12th grade (with continuing support through their college/university tenure); collaborating with schools, the community and external organizations; recruitment of professional and knowledgeable mentors to donate their time and talents; with volunteers from the faculty and staff from participating schools; ensuring Chapters participate in year round educational activities during school, after school, on weekends and during the summer; and developing multifaceted programs to ensure students are prepared academically, professionally and personally.
“We look forward to the accomplishments of LLA members and to their future successes, but we recognize there is much more work to do to get them through high school and college,” stated Christa Arocha-De Leon, Chair, LLA. “Most of our students are first-generation high school graduates, it’s LLA’s goal to assist them in paving the way for the second, third and fourth generations.”
LLA plans to establish its program in middle and high schools throughout Central Texas and eventually the entire state. The program currently has five major strands every member must complete: Cultural, Leadership, College Preparation, Mentorship and Community Service. Middle and high schools will determine their personal objectives in each strand. Each LLA chapter will service approximately 15 to 25 students, who will meet four times a month under the guidance of a faculty/staff member from participating schools.
“It is truly an honor to be a founding member of Latino Leaders of America, there are so few organizations providing assistance to the Latino student community and for that I am grateful,” said Maria Bahena, Co-Founder and Manor High School student. “So many of us do not have the luxury of family members who have experienced high school graduation, let alone college, LLA will fill this critical void.”
About Latino Leaders of America
LLA activities include lectures, workshops, trainings, support services, and field trips targeting the organization’s mission, vision, and objectives. Additionally, LLA will organize events in order to raise funds and awareness for the LLA cause including the application of grants to government and private organizations. Through these events, the organization will strengthen its ties with Central Texas and provide the community the opportunity to support the development of the LLA membership. For more information, please visit us at:
Facebook - www.facebook.com/latinoleadersofamerica
Twitter - www.twitter.com/LLA_2012
Web - www.latinoleadersofamerica.org.
CONTACT: ESTRADA COMMUNICATIONS GROUP • (512) 335-7776