TN Newcomer Teaches College Students about Latino Market
Valentina Escobar-Gonzalez was recently a guest speaker focusing on International Business with Hispanics in an undergraduate course at Virginia Intermont College. She is a recent Master of Business Administration graduate who just moved to the Tri-Cities area this summer from culturally diverse Florida. She discussed topics such as the $1.1 trillion Hispanic buying power, customs, and doing business with Latinos in and outside the United States.
Valentina started her presentation with a quote from November’s issue of Inc. magazine about studies estimating Hispanics having a $1.1 trillion in buying power, and how this number is expected to grow by 50% around 2016. She later emphasized the different stereotypes, cuisines, and subcultures revolving Latino customs throughout the 20 countries composing Latin America. To keep students interested in learning about the cultures she brought Cuban black beans, rice, and salsa.
“It is crucial to teach these students about Latino culture because Hispanics are the fastest growing minority in the United States,” she said. Students in the course mentioned that they have plans on leaving the area and pursuing opportunities in major cities. She adds, “these students have plans on leaving the Tri-Cities area and do not realize that Hispanics are everywhere in major cities, and knowledge about dealing with Latinos be could be a requisite to landing a job, giving them an upper hand in this competitive job market for new grads.
Valentina was raised in Miami where the population is 65-70% Hispanic as opposed to 0.92% in the Tri-Cities area. In order to succeed in business speaking Spanish is a priority with the Hispanic American population. In addition, being aware of how to conduct oneself to gain trust, respect, and ultimately close a sale.
During her upbringing in Miami, she gained an international perspective as a female in a mostly male-managed culture. After attending the University of Florida to obtain an Animal Sciences degree, she worked for a woman-owned startup in sales before pursuing a Master’s degree in Business. She recently became an Inbound Marketing Certified Professional through HubSpot. She just started donating her social media marketing knowledge to Second Harvest Food Bank in Gray and joined their Marketing Committee. She is initiating the process of starting her own social media marketing consulting firm focusing on the pet, multicultural, and pharmaceutical industry.
Valentina and her husband live in the Tri-Cities and have a chocolate Labrador, Hershey.
For more information about Valentina Escobar-Gonzalez, please visit her blog: http://valentinasequineblog.wordpress.com or email her at EquineVal@gmail.com