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Skagit Valley College to host Latinos in Action leadership conference featuring keynote speaker Dr. Jose Hernandez 

Skagit Valley College is partnering with Latinos in Action to host its Youth Leadership Conference on April 10 at its Mount Vernon campus. 

More than 220 students from 13 high schools and three middle schools in Skagit and Island counties will attend the conference in addition to Latino students from specific SVC programs.  

The day-long conference will feature informative workshops, cultural performances, an inspiring keynote speaker, and student competition awards and scholarships. 

The keynote speaker, Dr. Jose Hernandez, is a NASA engineer and former astronaut. Hernandez is one of four children in a migrant farming family from Mexico. Hernandez, who didn’t learn English until he was 12 years old, persevered through 11 rejections to become a crew member of a space shuttle mission.  

During his keynote speech, Hernandez will be sharing his story of persistence, perseverance, the importance of education, and how he became a leader. 

To kick off the day, SVC will host a VIP breakfast the morning of April 10 at McIntyre Hall with a presentation by Hernandez for local community and school leaders including local state and Latino national leaders. 

The LIA’s Youth Leadership Conference is part of a national tour. LIA is hosting 13 additional conferences at high schools, colleges, and universities across the country between March and May – each featuring Hernandez as the keynote speaker. 

To learn more about Latinos in Action and its Youth Leadership Conference, visit 


Skagit Valley College is making a difference throughout Skagit, Island, and San Juan counties by providing access to higher education for all who seek a better future. Part of what makes our college special is that we are deeply committed to equity in access, achievement, and community. Whether you are training for a new job, beginning your college experience, finishing the degree you started, adding English language skills, or pursuing a high school credential, Skagit Valley College welcomes you. 

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