This year we celebrate Rochester Institute of Technology’s Minett Professors-past and present.
Started in 1991, this is the 30th anniversary of the program. It brings multicultural professionals from the Rochester area to the RIT campus to share their expertise in a variety of ways with students, faculty and staff. It is an appointed position for one academic year.
In celebration, we are highlighting just a few of these extraordinary individuals who generously give of their time to make a difference at RIT.
Your current professional title/role
Incredible Customer Service Priority Owner at Wegmans Food Markets
When did you serve as a Minett?
I served during the 2016/17 academic year
What was your professional title/role at that time?
VP of Delivery & Operations for Dale Carnegie
Why did you say yes, to the invitation to serve?
As a Latina professional, I consider it a deep responsibility of mine to give back to the next generation and serve our young people of color. When we give back through our experience and talents, we lift those coming behind us.
What was your area of focus?
We focused a lot on success after graduating, which means communication and interviewing skills. I worked with the staff on a leadership series focused on self-awareness, stress, and connectedness. It was wonderful to work with students and staff to enhance RIT.
What experiences stand out during your professorship?
There was a WOCHA breakfast at Erika Duthiers’ home and it was such a powerful experience. Erika and I were very transparent about the obstacles, but also the resilience and character built being a woman of color. It’s all about perspective. We also did a few reflective exercises to make the young ladies think about who they needed to be for themselves and their communities. It was such a humbling experience to watch that wisdom transfer to that group of powerful young ladies.
Another one was speaking at Liberty Hill. It was focused on, “Action makes the world grow stronger.” At the end of the talk, President Destler said it was one of the most uncomfortable and important talks because it was all about human connection focused on Dale Carnegie’s teachings.
What did you learn from your year as a Minett?
I learned the students are RIT are incredible, and the RIT environment is one focused on inclusivity and innovation.