Tampa Attorney Martin Hernandez Celebrates 15 Years as a Sponsor of the USF Latino Scholarship Program

Tampa Attorney Martin Hernandez Celebrates 15 Years as a Sponsor of the USF Latino Scholarship Program
Tampa Attorney Martin Hernandez Celebrates 15 Years As a Sponsor of The University of South Florida (USF) Latino Scholarship Program.

Tampa, FL – Since becoming a USF Latino Scholarship donor in 2008, Martin J. Hernandez of Martin Hernandez Law Office helped eight students reach their academic goals.  By sponsoring scholarships for Latino students, most of whom are the first in their family to be able to seek higher education, Tampa injury attorney Martin Hernandez has helped these individuals realize bachelor’s and master’s degrees in disciplines such as computer engineering, physics, nursing, pre-medicine, and banking.  He plans to continue his current level of support indefinitely.

 “The motto of the USF Latino Scholarship Program, ‘we must lift as we climb’ really resonated with me,” said Hernandez.  “These are all bright, ambitious young adults, and they deserve a shot at success.”  

 A good case in point is Tian Dominguez, Martin’s first scholarship recipient.  Dominguez graduated with a master’s degree in Computer Science from USF in 2013.  He now is building a successful career in a high-tech field in Texas and credits the scholarship with helping him reach his goals.

“I graduated from Jefferson High School in 2007 and was on the standard path toward a four-year degree.  That involved some scholarships from high school but also student loans.  Even with scholarships, student loans were still a necessity.  Mr. Hernandez’s scholarship through USF really took a lot of the pressure of getting my advanced degree off my shoulders,” said Dominguez.

Dominguez now works for Cognizant, an IT consulting and business process firm that outsources their services for a wide range of industries, including banking, health care, manufacturing, media, and entertainment.  He is the first person in the U.S. to earn a degree in his family.  His mother, Olga Cuevas, earned an advanced degree in education in Cuba in English Literature and encouraged him to seek his master’s.  She learned about the USF Latino Scholarship as a teacher at Jefferson High School.

 “Tian was so lucky, but he also worked very hard for what he’s achieved,” said Cuevas.  “He loves his job and is very clever…he’s going to have a bright future.  We are so grateful for Martin and his wife, Heidi, and what they helped make possible for him.”  

Another good case in point is Jessica Concepcion, who just completed her master’s in Nursing to become a nurse practitioner.  Hernandez’s sponsorship of a USF Latino Scholarship helped her earn her bachelor’s degree in Health Sciences.  She, too, is one of the first in her family to attend college.  

“That scholarship made my last semesters much smoother and easier to reach my goals,” said Concepcion.  “In turn, you also get to network with successful people and form a bond with them, like I have with Martin.  We still keep in touch on social media, and I’ve referred people I know who might need legal services to him.”  

Another key component of sponsorship for Hernandez is the mentorship that comes with it.  He likes to schedule lunches with his scholarship recipients so he can stay in touch with their progress.

 “For most of these students, this is their first exposure to college, and I like to help them figure out their way if I can.  A few times it has been about encouraging them to stay in college and not be tempted to enter the workforce too soon.  Sometimes, people who haven’t been to college may not see the long-term benefits of a college degree versus having a student helping out with expenses at home,” said Hernandez.

The USF Latino Scholarship was founded in 1992 through the Latin Community Advisory Board to the President and has now been in place for over 30 years.  Since that time, the Program has awarded scholarships to 700 students valued at $4.2 million.  But the Program isn’t entirely academically focused, according to Flor Martinez, Program Manager for the USF Latino Scholarship Program.

 “We also offer our students’ development opportunities through monthly seminars and try to cover topics more related to life skills than their areas of study.  Topics range from insurance to financial literacy to understanding what their credit scores mean,” says Martinez.  

 Martinez also noted that because of the longevity of the program, they see it impacting multiple students in the same family.

“We now have siblings from previous graduates entering the Program,” she said. “We’re also seeing our alumni become donors themselves, so we’re seeing a positive effect on multiple generations as well.”  

To learn more about the USF Latino Scholarship Program, visit www.giving.usf.edu/LSP.

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Company Name: Martin J. Hernandez, PA
Contact Person: Martin Hernanedez
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Phone: (813) 755-9500
Address:3002 W. Kennedy Blvd.
City: Tampa
State: Florida 33609
Country: United States
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