Daniel Rivera a junior at Ferris State University, is a student leader actively engaged in addressing issues of diversity, inclusion and advocacy for the underrepresented. He is in his third year as president of the Hispanic Student Association and is employed as the special projects assistant for our Center for Latin@ Studies. In our Office of Admissions he works as a student representative, providing advocacy and support for Hispanic high school students considering college. Daniel took the lead in developing the mentorship component of Ferris State University's Promesa Program for at-risk ethnically diverse students and has personally mentored two students through this program. His leadership efforts have created a Bilingual Sexual Assault awareness campaign, and an annual campus march in honor of Cesar E. Chavez.
Addressing the issue of underrepresentation is about intentionally making the overlooked, visible and valued. I learned about these many issues from an early age when I realized my Hispanic culture was part of my home life but not part of my life outside of family. The scope of this issue enlarged as I learned of the experiences of others like myself in pursuit of higher education. Through various learning opportunities and unique exposure to spaces within my greater community, I learned the power of advocacy, the duty of civic engagement and that great change can happen through building a united and equitably represented community.
As President of the Hispanic Student Organization, I led the establishment of an advocacy culture leading to membership-at-large civic engagement and a leader for policy that is inclusive of all students on campus. Examples of this include establishing community engagement beyond campus, a bilingual Sexual Assault awareness campaign and a campus wide collaboration to establish an annual march in honor of Cesar E. Chavez. As the lead in the Founding line of Sigma Lambda Beta, Inc. I work collaboratively with campus Greek leadership to establish new structures and policies that are supportive of Multicultural Greek communities.