In celebration of 2018 Hispanic Heritage Month, employees share empowering stories reflecting on culture and building community in tech.
From student in a strange land to mentor in corporate America
Pablo Toro’s journey to tech began in Colombia. When he was just 16 years old, Pablo and his family left their home country to seek political asylum in the U.S. He found himself entering 11th grade in a new country where he didn’t speak the language. To make matters more challenging, he had to immediately prepare for the SATs, which would help chart his future. Fortunately, he says he was lucky to go to a school with good teachers and a strong support system that helped him acclimate and learn English. He ramped up quickly. After high school, he put himself through college working odd jobs—cleaning houses, washing cars, and working different jobs until becoming a mortgage broker —before graduating with his degree in engineering.
Since joining Intel nine years ago as an intern, he has worked in a variety of positions within our Corporate Services organization and now manages research, development, sales and marketing facilities throughout the West Coast of the U.S. and Canada.
He found a community at work through the Intel Latino Network (ILN). As a former vice president and president of the Oregon chapter and the national leader, he says the ILN has given him critical leadership experience and a platform to pay forward the help and support he was given along the way.
He is proud to serve as a pipeline, connecting and engaging leadership with the Latino network. He is a passionate advocate for helping young professionals succeed. He helps his mentees prepare strong resumes and polish their interview skills, and he recommends candidates who show enthusiasm, preparation, and passion for Intel.
Originally from Puerto Rico, Yuri Ramirez seemed destined to a life in academia. Both of his parents were professors and instilled in him a deep appreciation for education. Instead of teaching, he became a lifelong learner. He holds a host of degrees—including a master’s degree and MBA in operations and a PhD in industrial engineering. He joined Intel upon finishing graduate school at the University of Wisconsin.
From his experiences with professional organizations in college, he understood the value of employee networks. He joined the Intel Latino Network (ILN), which offers training, help with career progression, goals, and a platform for leadership development. The benefits were unmistakable—he became more comfortable asserting himself in meetings and taking stretch assignments.
He is now co-chair of the Oregon chapter of ILN. His goal is to connect with every Hispanic employee and communicate about ILN and available resources. He works with the Intel Hispanic Leadership Council on a conversation series where Hispanic leaders share their career experiences, challenges, and personal triumphs. Each session averages an audience of 150 employees and helps humanize senior leadership, brining visibility to internal role models.
Half of the people that now attend events like the conversation series are non-Latino. He sees this as another example of Intel’s culture of inclusion, not just diversity. To him, diversity is about numbers, but inclusion is about learning, working, and growing together.
Three months after Pedro Quintero earned his PhD in physics, he joined our Intel family. Three years later, he’s proven himself an innovation wunderkind.
Born in Colombia, Pedro always knew he wanted to work in the global tech industry. He was drawn to Intel for the opportunity to pioneer groundbreaking technology. His work in the field of molecule-based magnets has created a path for light-controllable magnetism at room temperature—a property that holds exciting potential for new exotic devices.
Though the only Latino on his team, Pedro fosters cultural connections at work as a member of our Intel Latino Network (ILN). The group has a strong presence at his campus, and he enjoys participating in soccer games and attending other ILN events.
He is enthusiastic about sparking the same love of STEM he has in others. He is involved with community outreach in Oregon and volunteers with the Washington Center Cultural Summer Camp, helping Hispanic middle school kids learn to code through hands-on robotics projects.
Interested in learning more about amazing engineers like Pablo, Yuri, and Pedro? Follow @WeAreIntel for our new series #VivanLos50 featuring employees’ cultures, experiences, and stories in celebration of the 50th anniversary of Hispanic Heritage Month.