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Students Visit Google and Shedd Aquarium as Part of Future Leaders Program

Friday, May 10, 2019

A group of female Dominican students participating in the 2019 Future Leaders Program are visiting with executives at Google and the Shedd Aquarium the week of May 6 to gain a better understanding of the professional possibilities available in the workplace. The program is offered under the auspices of The Chicago Network, an organization including Chicago's most influential women at the forefront of the city's business, professional, cultural, nonproft and educational communities and dedicated to empowering other women to lead. 

Dominican students participating in this year's program include:

* Bianca Spadafina

* Vicky Valentin

* Aeshah Aljuwaybir

* Guadalupe Belmonte

* Ana Cabral Gamboa

* Angela Martinez

* Angelica Socha

* Karina Salgado

* Nicole Strojek

* Amanda Urdiales

* Alena Valenzuela

* Marlena Rebidas

* Claire Widseth

  The six-year-old Future Leaders program provdes outstanding sophomore and junior college students with opportunities for exploring career paths in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors. The goal of the program is to inspire the next generation of women leaders and level the playing field so that participants, most of whom are first-generation-to-college and did not grow up with professionals as parents, come away with a better understanding of career opportunities available at different types of organizations. 

In addition to Dominican, the program partners with Loyola University and University of Illinois at Chicago.

Dominican students are accompanied by Jamie Shaw, director of career development in the Brennan School of Business. During their orientation meeting on Friday, May 3, students had the opportunity to meet with Natalie Spears, partner, Dentons US LLP; Grace Hou, secretary, Illinois Department of Human Services; Karyn Esken, former vice president of business development, Tribune Content Agency; Renetta McCann, chief talent officer, Leo Burnett Group; Jennifer Rosato Perea, dean and professor, DePaul University College of Law; and Gail Hasbrouck, board member, Advocate Healthcare.

Students visited Google on Wednesday, May 8, and met with Karen Sauder, Google's vice president of sales, and other senior leaders before receiving a tour of the facility. 

The group visited the Shedd Aquarium on Friday, May 10 and met with Bridget Coughlin, Shedd's president and CEO, as well as the aquarium's executive leadership team. They also enjoyed a behind-the-scenes tour of the water quality lab, the animal hospital, the operations and security hub and the salt mixing facility.