Siemens’ CSR national initiative awards scholarships to students in historically black colleges and universities

ISELIN, N.J.– The Siemens Foundation announced the winners of the 2010 Siemens Teacher Scholarship today in partnership with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. The CSR program from Siemens provides scholarships to students enrolled in the nation’s public and private Historically Black Colleges and Universities who are pursuing teaching careers in science, technology, engineering or mathematics.

The program provides scholars with a fun, laboratory-style teaching opportunity through the Siemens Foundation’s Siemens Science Day program, a nationwide initiative in partnership with Discovery Education that has reached more than 54,000 elementary and middle school students in 36 states since its inception in 2006. This year’s scholars taught classrooms from New York to the U.S. Virgin Islands.

“We know the value of good teachers, and we’re committed to encouraging scholars who want to teach vital STEM subjects,” said Jeniffer Harper-Taylor, Vice President of the Siemens Foundation and graduate of Southern University in Baton Rouge, LA. “Our Siemens Teacher Scholars have shown the type of enthusiasm and drive in science and technology that will inspire our next generation of innovators to pursue their dreams.”

Mehrin Gadit, a senior Biology/Secondary Education major at York College, City University of New York, visited P.S. 120 in New York City to conduct her Siemens Science Day with fourth graders. “This was my first time interacting with students of this age, better yet my first time teaching them,” she said. Mehrin’s experiment helped students gain an understanding of how botanists define fruits, and about plant reproduction. “It is great that students get to exercise science by doing and discovering their own knowledge, instead of teachers lecturing to them. Inquiry-based lessons open up the mind of the student, letting them explore their options,” she said.

“The Siemens Foundation’s investment in increasing the pipeline of highly-qualified minority teachers in STEM fields directly addresses the national call to higher education to produce the caliber of students that will shape the future,” said Dr. N. Joyce Payne, Founder, Thurgood Marshall College Fund. “Thurgood Marshall College Fund is proud to join efforts with the Siemens Foundation that has a long history of support of excellence in education, particularly in science and mathematics.”

Morayo Adebiyi, a junior biology major at Spelman College in Atlanta, GA, described her Siemens Science Day at nearby middle school: “I purposely targeted a school where the students were not performing well in the areas of science and math. My idea was to help these students develop a passion for these subjects and allow them to apply what they learned to their everyday lives.” Morayo’s activity helped students learn about elasticity and kinetic energy. Students learned how the height from which a ball is dropped affects how high it bounces. Students also learned about averaging and graphing. She brought a basketball to class so that the students could apply these topics to a game they all know and love. “This experience allowed me to be aware of the immediate need for passionate teachers in my community,” she said.

A complete list of the 2010 Siemens Teacher Scholarship recipients follows:

USA Funds awards $500,000 to national scholarship groups

INDIANAPOLIS , IN– USA Funds has announced the award of $500,000 to five national scholarship organizations that promote access to higher
education for minority students. Each organization received $100,000 to support its scholarship programs.

For the ninth consecutive year, USA Funds has awarded funds to the
American Indian College Fund, the Hispanic Scholarship Fund and the
United Negro College Fund. For the third consecutive year, USA Funds
also has awarded funds to the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund and
the Asian & Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund.

“Scholarships like the ones supported by USA Funds provide the
critical link for students to succeed in higher education,” said APIASF President and Executive Director Neil Horikoshi. “Each scholarship not only changes the life of a deserving student, it contributes to a stronger America.”

“These organizations are successfully making a difference in the lives
of the students they serve by helping them realize their dreams of
postsecondary education,” said Robert C. Ballard, USA Funds senior
vice president, program and corporate development. “In keeping with
USA Funds’ nonprofit mission to enhance access to higher education, we
are pleased to support these organizations and their scholarship

Might Online Media Disrupt Acculturation?

By Joe Kutchera
President of dotGlobal

After reading Felipe Korzenny’s and Lee Vann’s column about Hispanics’ adoption of social media relative to other ethnic demographics, a question came to mind: how will social networks affect the acculturation process among Hispanics? The ability to keep in touch with family and friends from countries-of-origin via email, Skype and online newspapers back home makes it easier than ever. Travel costs are at historic lows. And computer and mobile phone prices fall every year.

Combine these questions with the fact that more communities like Miami and McAllen, Texas, are reaching the tipping point of having a majority of Spanish speakers, and the question about how online media affects acculturation de serves some consideration. Six experts discuss this issue, after which you are invited to leave your comments, links to research and additional questions below.

“Latinos have strong ties to their heritage and country of origin,” says Alvaro Palacios, the Regional Director of Business Development at Terra. “According to Pew’s Latino Youth report, only 33% of second-generation Hispanics claims to be American first, while 41% still prefer to name their country of origin. Even with third-generation Hispanics, only 50% consider themselves American first.”

“The Internet is definitely helping with the acculturation process among U.S. Hispanics, with new generations consuming English content on local sites and being almost 100% integrated into the U.S. culture, ” says Marta Martinez, the CEO of StarMedia. “On the other hand, a large percentage of Hispanics consume Spanish sites here and from their country of origin. What the Internet brings to all of us is diversity and choice.”

“Being able to understand the culture and institutions in the country they are immigrating to will continue to be important,” says Tamara Barber, an analyst at Forrester Research. “But, these different avenues of connecting back home will certainly encourage stronger ties to their countries of origin and could develop into a phenomenon that we see among Hispanic youth, where they are very truly straddling two cultures. The beauty of social media in a cross-border context is that it can actually help immigrants develop more of a bicultural existence.”

“Digital technologies have made it much easier to stay in touch with friends and family from wherever they may be; however, I tend to look at acculturation as a choice,” says Christopher Stanley, CEO of Alcance Media Group. “If you live in a country for numerous years and need to live and work in the language, “acculturation” will happen. As a U.S. native living in Chile, I could have easily chosen to surround myself with other ‘gringos’ living abroad. However, I made the effort to learn the language and culture. Technology may make it more comfortable to stay in a bubble, but it ultimately is a choice.”

“Online Hispanics (excluding mobile) are primarily English-language dominant, meaning they are either U.S. born (second-generation), or came to the U.S. at an early age,” says Maria Lopez-Knowles, SVP of MRM Worldwide. “They also have the econo m ic means to afford the technology that allows them to stay ‘connected,’ which in and of itself assumes some level of acculturation. Online Hispanics would have to be living in a virtual existence practically 24/7 for this to happen. Regardless of how connected they are, they still live in the U.S. So while I don’t think it limits the acculturation process, I believe that it impacts and reinforces the retro-acculturation process.”

“Acculturation by definition is not assimilation; it is the layering of native cultural experiences into a new cultural context,” says Kevin Conroy, president of Univision Interactive Media. “In other words, layering in ‘home country’ experiences over ‘U.S.’ experiences. This is the reason the use of the Spanish-language is still growing (77% speak Spanish at home) — Hispanics have not assimilated and lost their language identity, i n stead they have maintained their passion for their language and culture and woven them into their U.S. Hispanic experience. To that end, the Web brings value to this dynamic; it enables U.S. Hispanics to more easily stay current with their home country and cultural passion points while remaining very much members of the U.S. Hispanic community.”

What do you think?

Story courtesy MediaPost Engage:Hispanic.

Transitions Optical partners with Dr. Aliza for new eye health channel on

LOS ANGELES, CA – Transitions Optical has partnered with Dr. Aliza for a new Salud Visual channel that provides U.S. Hispanics with eye health information from a user-friendly point of view on the celebrity doctor’s web site

Transitions Optical has provided with years of medical data and research on eye health,  ensuring that the site’s editorial staff has access to the most current medical thinking as it develops accessible, consumer-friendly content on visual health.

“Our readers enjoy coming to because the information presented is both entertaining and educational. Our readers are part of a community that wants to be informed and wants to help their families be in good health,” said Dr. Aliza Lifshitz. “The Salud Visual channel will be regularly updated with new articles on a variety of topics related to visual health. We are also pleased to be able to feature a number of animated videos, developed by Transitions Optical, to communicate eye care concepts to our users.”

Eighty percent of what children learn during their first few years is visual. Knowing how important precious sight is to learning and reading, Transitions Optical donated over 150 Spanish and bilingual books to Milagro Charter School’s Library.

“At Transitions Optical, we strongly believe that healthy sight plays a vital role as part of a child’s learning and development process,” said Manuel Solis, multicultural manager, Transitions Optical. “Growing up, I had problems with my vision, and my parents always insisted on taking me every year to see the eye doctor. Their constant care translated into years of healthy sight for me and contributed to the passion I share with Transitions Optical to help parents better understand eye care and the role healthy vision plays as part of their child’s life.”

Alliance for Digital Equality appoints Howard Wright to Board of Advisors and Harriette Watson as Technology Officer

ATLANTA, GA- The Alliance for Digital Equality (ADE), announced the appointment of Howard Wright, VP of Global Business Development at Qualcomm to Board of Advisors and Harriette Watson as Technology Officer

Mr. Wright, Vice President of Global Business Development at Qualcomm
Incorporated is responsible for fostering relationship and constructing deals between Qualcomm and their partners across wireless, automotive, and retail industries. Howard is the corporate liaison for Qualcomm.

“Howard’s addition to the ADE Board enhances ADE’s ability to advocate
the use of wireless broadband in fostering the delivery of vital services to both underserved and un-served communities,” said Julius H. Hollis, ADE Chairman. “The ADE Digital Empowerment Councils established in nine major urban centers across our nation will gain accessibility to innovative digital technology applications as a result of Howard’s involvement with our organization.”

Following completion of his Economics Degree from Stanford University
in 1989, Wright began his athletic career in the NBA with the Dallas
Mavericks, Orlando Magic, and Atlanta Hawks. Wright then brought his
competitive drive and teamwork skills to Qualcomm in 2001 managing
business development with application developers for Qualcomm’s BREW

Harriette Watson’s overall responsibility as Technology Officer is to
strategically develop, plan and manage ADE’s information systems and
technology platforms in conjunction with ADE corporate sponsors to
strengthen ADE’s Programs and Services to underserved and un-served
communities. (more…)

Univision Radio stations to host national CSR initiative on March 4 & 5 benefiting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Univision Radio and its radio stations around the country will join the fight against childhood cancer during the Promesa y Esperanza (Promise and Hope) national CSR radiothon, to be held on March 4-5, 2010, benefiting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Univision Radio will host this annual initiative to help St. Jude in its mission to find cures and save children battling cancer and other catastrophic diseases. More than 30 hours of programming will be dedicated to fundraising for St. Jude. The event will be broadcast in more than 17 markets around the country, including Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, Dallas, New York and Puerto Rico.

“We appreciate the continued support of Univision Radio,” said Richard C. Shadyac Jr., Chief Executive Officer of ALSAC, the fundraising organization of St. Jude. “Through the hard work and dedication of the Univision Radio staff combined with the generosity of their listeners, the Promesa y Esperanza radiothon is poised for tremendous success.”

“Each year, Univision Radio’s listeners and employees recognize the importance of giving back by helping organizations like St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, where no child is ever denied treatment because of the family’s inability to pay,” said Gary Stone, president and chief operating officer of Univision Radio. “It is extremely important to collaborate with St. Jude and its mission to help ensure that thousands of children will have the opportunity to battle these terrible diseases.”

During the two-day event, radio listeners will learn about the heart-warming stories from some of the Hispanic patients being treated at St. Jude.

Mass. Democrats Launch New Effort To Court Latinos

BOSTON, MA ― From Acton to Andover, voters packed the polls during last month’s special election to replace the late-Sen. Edward Kennedy. Election officials reported record turnout in a race that resulted in the stunning victory of Republican Scott Brown over Democrat Martha Coakley.

But in Chelsea, Lawrence and New Bedford, cities with sizable Latino populations that have traditionally voted Democratic, turnout was low. Some residents said they didn’t know — or didn’t care — an election was going on given the lack of signs and campaign visits to their cities.  To read the full story click here.

P&G helps LULAC open free ‘Entre Comadres’ life skills training centers

CINCINNATI, OH– Each year, thousands of Latinos move to the United States. For many Latina immigrants, learning new skills is key to helping them and their families successfully adapt to their new environment.

Starting in February P&G and its Tide and Downy brands are helping LULAC (League of United Latin American Citizens) to create “Entre Comadres”–a program intended to help women have access to information that helps them and their families lead their best life in the country.

The “Entre Comadres” centers are located in Dallas, Houston and Los
Angeles at LULAC community facilities and offer fully equipped
classroom-style settings, including computers with Internet access,
printers, video conferencing and other telecommunications equipment.

“We recognize that moving to a new place is stressful and requires one
to learn new skills in order to have the best possible opportunity to
succeed,” said Alita Vegas, P&G Multicultural Marketing Director.
“Latinas play a tremendous role as the gatekeepers and center of their
families and we know that helping them is critical for the benefit of
the community.”

The centers will be open throughout the year and course offerings will
be adjusted to meet the demands of each local community. Participants
can sign up for as many courses as are available to them. While the
free courses are designed with Latinas in mind, anyone in the
community can participate.

Arbitron makes in-depth Hispanic and Black radio studies available for free download

COLUMBIA, MD – Arbitron Inc. announced the free download availability of its “Hispanic Radio Today 2009, How America Listens to Radio” and “Black Radio Today 2009, How America Listens to Radio” studies.  Both are available for download at  Both of the studies feature Portable People Meter(TM) (PPM(TM)) data information for the first time.

“Ethnic formatted stations reach millions of listeners everyday,” said Alton Adams. “These studies show the strength of radio as a media companion to ethnic consumers. Radio’s relationship with ethnic listeners has been consistent over time; year over year, more than 90 percent of black and Hispanic listeners tune in to radio for news, culture and sounds of the community.”

The Hispanic radio study includes the following highlights:

– #1 English-language format among Hispanics is Rhythmic CHR.

– #1 Spanish-Dominant format is Spanish News/Talk.

– Radio’s Reach among Hispanics Remain Strong.

– Radio’s reach among Hispanic listeners has remained between 94% and 96%, since the beginning of the Hispanic Radio Today series in 2001

– Hispanic weekend ratings have grown in relation to weekday listening

The Black radio study includes the following highlights:

– For the first time, Urban Contemporary formatted stations had higher weekend ratings in Fall 08 than in weekday afternoons.

– African-American Urban Adult Contemporary listeners spent more time each week with the format (8 hours, 30 minutes) than any other format in the study.

– More than half of Urban Contemporary’s 18+ consumers attended or graduated from college, and one in seven had advanced degrees or

– News/Talk/Information has 2,634 stations and attracts 2.7 million African-American listeners weekly.

These reports are available on the Radio Today page

Highlights from these and other studies can be found on Twitter.

New America Media tells Congress to use the nation’s ethnic media more

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The US Census Bureau is missing opportunities to provide reporting instructions to diverse communities in the United States by failing to fully utilize the ethnic media that can reach more than 60 million adults in those communities, according to testimony from New America Media (NAM) in
Congress today.

Sandy Close, NAM’s executive director, called the 2010 Census advertising program an “unprecedented investment” in ethnic and community media, having identified 3,000 media outlets across the country. But she cautioned that many key media outlets were left out, including 47% of those that attended roundtable sessions organized by NAM and the Census Bureau last year to learn how they could help with the count. She noted that several prominent African American papers had been excluded.

“Many are frustrated — they don’t know why they fell through the cracks. Some are bitter. All very urgently want a role — even if small — and believe, as I do, that together they can move the needle those extra percentage points,” said Ms. Close, testifying before the Oversight and Government Reform’s Subcommittee on Information Policy, Census and National Archives. Her organization represents more than 2,500 ethnic media outlets across the country.

The roundtable discussions organized last year included more than 600
ethnic media representatives in 12 cities from coast to coast. The ethnic media participating included media giants like Univision, Asian language dailies, BET and Clear Channel stations to established black and Spanish language weeklies, upstart radio and TV stations, as well as niche print and online outlets serving Burmese, Ethiopian, Arab, Russian, Mixtec, Punjabi and Samoan communities.

“Their hunger to participate in the 2010 Campaign is intense — you
could cut the exuberance at these gatherings with a knife,” Ms. Close
testified. “For many media, it was the first time they’d come together
as a media sector in the same city. They get the Census: they get
their community’s stake in a complete count, and they get their own.”

In citing the importance of an accurate Census count not only on federal dollars, but private ones as well, she noted the experience of Juan Carlos Ramos of the El Tiempo Hispanic newspaper in New Orleans. Mr. Ramos said the 2000 Census undercounted Hispanics in New Orleans and as a result Coca Cola dropped New Orleans, and his paper, from their national ad campaign.

Shakira partners with Hard Rock International for Artist Spotlight merchandise

ORLANDO, Fla– Hard Rock International launches Shakira Artist Spotlight T-Shirt and Bracelet through the Artist Spotlight program, beginning February 2010. The merchandise will benefit Shakira’s Fundacion Pies Descalzos, an organization devoted to finding and providing opportunities for children who are victims of violence in Colombia.

Shakira created Fundacion Pies Descalzos In 1997, and as a result of her efforts, was appointed UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.

Shakira created Fundacion Pies Descalzos In 1997, and as a result of her efforts, was appointed UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.

“I’m proud and excited to continue my partnership with Hard Rock International through the Artist Spotlight program,” said Shakira. “With the launch of the Shakira Artist Spotlight T-Shirt, I hope to increase international awareness and support for the Fundacion Pies Descalzos, an organization that is extremely close to my heart.”

“We were thrilled by the outstanding response to Hard Rock’s Shakira Signature Series T-shirt, launched in 2007, and are excited to continue our relationship with Shakira for her Artist Spotlight T-Shirt,” said Hamish Dodds, president and chief executive officer, Hard Rock International. “We look forward to our ongoing work with Shakira and her Fundacion Pies Descalzos.”

Mickey Ibarra & Associates announces new name, Dallas office, strategic partnerships and staff

WASHINGTON, D.C. — After ten years of service Mickey Ibarra & Associates has changed its name to the IBARRA STRATEGY GROUP (ISG) — a government and public affairs firm providing strategic advocacy services to corporate and non-profit clients.

Mickey Ibarra & Associates logo

Mickey Ibarra & Associates logo

“Having provided our clients with superior service for success since
2001, today we launch ISG, open a Dallas office, establish new
strategic partnerships and add staff to better serve our national
client base,” said Mickey Ibarra, ISG President and Founder.

New partners include:

Ibarra Strategy Group logo

Ibarra Strategy Group logo

– The Molera Alvarez Group, a Phoenix-based business development and
consulting firm specializing in government affairs, public relations
and community outreach;
– Fernandez Government Solutions, a legislative strategy and advocacy
firm in Sacramento, California; and
– Plus Three, a marketing technology and on-line advocacy firm that
uses web-based technology to promote social change in America.

Michelle Minguez-Moore has been named ISG Vice President, Business
Development and Client Services. ISG  says it is leveraging Minguez-Moore’s
knowledge, experience and consulting skills to expand the firm, ensure
client satisfaction, and coordinate strategic partnerships.

Mickey Ibarra and Michelle Minguez Moore

Mickey Ibarra and Michelle Minguez Moore

In addition, Maritza Kelley joins the ISG team as the firm’s newest
associate. Kelley previously served as Policy Director for the
Mexican-American Legislative Caucus of Texas. She will provide policy,
research and advocacy services.

“These changes announced today will enhance our capacity to better
serve ISG’s current and potential clients in Washington, DC and across
the country,” added Ibarra.