‘You’re my new role model’: V Teamer inspires Latino youth with her career journey

Lorraine Nieto, mom of six, worked her way up from customer service rep to senior management.

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V Teamer Lorraine Nieto (right) poses with Manhattan Bridges High School students Weenifer Molina (left) and Jessica Mejia (center) after sharing her inspirational story.

As she describes it, Lorraine Nieto took a nontraditional path to a management role at Verizon. That’s part of the reason why Nieto, director for client services in Verizon Partner Solutions, enjoys sharing her story with middle and high school students as part of her work with Citizen Verizon Volunteers.

“It’s extremely important that our students see someone Latina, a woman in tech, a mom of six—all these different challenges I’ve faced—that they see it as possible,” Nieto explains. “Sharing that story is a powerful thing for me to give back to the community.”

Nieto chose to leave college and start a family with her then-boyfriend, knowing she wanted to be a mom. Today she leads a global team of 70, after rising through the company for 25 years. Nieto also did, later on, go back and earn a bachelor’s and master’s degree—but she says did it for her kids. “Ultimately I did go back to school—not because the company made me, it wasn’t a requirement—but so my children could see that mom did this,” Nieto explains.

Today, the kids whom Nieto inspires include the hundreds of Latino high-schoolers she speaks to each year while volunteering with HISPA (Hispanics Inspiring Students' Performance and Achievement), a Verizon Strategic Volunteer Partner. The New Jersey-based organization’s Role Models program “is all about bringing Latino professionals to be active role models in the communities where they live and work,” says Dr. Ivonne Díaz-Claisse, president and CEO of HISPA. “Our dream is that all Latino professionals in the United States stop into a classroom and share their story.”

For those looking to jump into volunteering, Nieto says the Citizen Verizon Volunteers portal makes it easy to find opportunities based on interest or skill. “Volunteering is a mutual benefit to the person volunteering and to the recipients of your time in your efforts,” she adds. “It fills me with joy to know that my story leaves an impression, especially when a young girl comes up to me and says, ‘You’ve inspired me today, thank you, you’re my new role model.’”

Get inspired during the season of giving! Find a Citizen Verizon Volunteers opportunity today.

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