Founded on the principles of fostering professional development, social connections, and community service, Wharton Latino is an undergraduate organization with a mission “to promote and unite the Latino community within the University of Pennsylvania.” Because Wharton Latino is open not only to Wharton School students, but to the University’s entire undergraduate community, its roster includes more than 150 active members, 10 committees, 500+ subscribers to their weekly newsletter, and 11 corporate sponsors.
Fourth-year student Leah Mizrachi from Panama City, Panama, is majoring in finance and business analytics at Wharton, and is the club’s president. Mizrachi’s creates an inclusive and vibrant home for the Latino community at Penn. Unlike many other Wharton-led student clubs, Wharton Latino does not require an application process, fees, or for its members to consist solely of Wharton students.
“We strive for the complete opposite of exclusivity,” Mizrachi says.
Ariana Bedoya Mansilla also found similar and immediate leadership opportunities with Wharton Latino. A fourth-year student from Bolivia and of Brazilian descent, Bedoya Mansilla joined the club’s traditional Freshmen Dinner, and bonded with the group.
“As soon as I arrived at Penn, Wharton Latino found me,” Bedoya Mansilla says. “The upperclassmen and the Board at the time knew who the new Latinos were and immediately opened the doors of their community. Right away, I knew I had a place to call home, full of marvelous people with similar backgrounds and interests. Looking back, my favorite memories at both Wharton and Penn will remain as sharing and participating in this special community.”
Each year, more than 50 Wharton Latino members travel to New York via bus, visiting different corporate offices and leadership teams. This opportunity grants students the exclusive opportunity to learn, network, and converse about leading successful lives in the corporate world.
Throughout the rest of the year, club members don’t need to travel for similar exposure to big names and high-profile learning opportunities. At the Wharton Latino Career Conference, an annual fall event, the club selects 12 companies who then come to Penn’s campus.
Open to Penn’s entire community, last year’s career conference was Bedoya Mansilla’s favorite event during her time with Wharton Latino. “[The Wharton Latino Career Conference] is one of the most important events for which Wharton Latino is distinguished because it represents one of our most important values: equity,” Bedoya Mansilla says. “As an affinity club, we believe in granting everyone opportunities to thrive, which is why all members of Penn are invited to participate in this annual event.”
This story is by Grace Meredith. Read more at Wharton Stories.