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September 9 | 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Keynote remarks by Syracuse University alumna Dayanna Torres, Director, Blackstone Charitable Foundation
Panel and pitches by diverse student founders
Dayanna holds a bachelor of arts degree in communications and rhetorical studies, a bachelor of science degree in management and technology, a master of science in public relations from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Relations and a master of arts degree in international relations and public diplomacy from the Maxwell School, all from Syracuse University. She is a member of the Syracuse University VPA Young Alumni Council. As a student, she was actively involved in student organizations related to diversity, inclusion and equity, and went on to shape a career in social impact and equitable economic development.
Dayanna recently joined the Blackstone Charitable Foundation with more than ten years of experience in higher education, nonprofit, and the public sector. She was previously with JobsFirstNYC and the New York City Economic Development Corporation where she helped oversee strategies for employer partnerships, market driven talent pipeline solutions, and workforce and business development. . Prior to NYCEDC, she served as the Founding Manager for Single Stop at CUNY John Jay College, a Robin Hood funded program offering first generation college students financial literacy and customized support services to navigate public systems and resources. She also held roles at the New York City Housing Authority where she launched and managed partnerships that connected public housing residents with adult education and training, financial literacy and business development, and launched the Goodwill Industries Jobs Plus site and the North Bronx Resident Economic Empowerment & Sustainability (REES) Zone. Prior to NYCHA, Dayanna served as the first Outreach Recruiter for the Big Brothers Big Sisters Brooklyn & Queens Mentoring Children of Prisoners program where she established partnerships with the NYC Department of Corrections and community organizations to connect youth impacted by incarceration to mentors.
In her role at the Blackstone Charitable Foundation she helps create programs to empower entrepreneurs and an environment where careers can flourish and support the communities in which we live and work. She will help oversee the Blackstone Charitable Foundation’s expansion of its LaunchPad program to support underrepresented students and communities. Going forward, LaunchPad will focus on colleges and universities that have a majority diverse population or are serving under-resourced communities. With a $40 million commitment, LaunchPad will increase its program from 30 to 75 campuses over the next five years. The Foundation will work with UNCF, the largest scholarship provider for students of color, as a strategic advisor to help identify schools appropriate for growth, develop plans to support students, and use their platform to amplify LaunchPad’s mission.
Following Dayanna’s remarks, a panel of diverse student startups will pitch their innovation venture ideas, seeking feedback, coaches and subject matter experts, and connections that can help them on their entrepreneurial journey.
Can’t attend in person, but want to mentor a Syracuse University student startup? It’s easy to sign up to be a mentor here: https://launchpad.syr.edu/become-a-mentor/
Learn more about the Launch Pad here: https://launchpad.syr.edu/
Register on here on Eventbrite to receive a Zoom link if you would like to watch this virtually.
This event is part of Welcome to Coming Back Together 2021, September 9 – 12 at Syracuse University. Starting in 1983, Coming Back Together (CBT) was the first reunion of its kind. Every three years, Black and Latino/a alumni come back to campus to celebrate their accomplishments, meet current students, and remain connected with the University.
The theme of this year’s reunion is “Celebrating 151 Years of Black and Latino/a Excellence at SU”. Over the four-day weekend, there will be numerous workshops, receptions, social events, and cultural activities. Highlights include: CBT Celebrity Classic Basketball Game, CBT Concert, CBT Lecture, CBT Tailgate on the Quad, SU Football Game vs. Rutgers University, CBT Fundraising Gala and Awards Ceremony, and the Sunday Worship Service. The Multicultural Advancement Team, along with its alumni and student reunion co-chairs, invite you to what they expect will be the best CBT ever.