Road Trip for Men of Color – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Road Trip for Men of Color

Minnesota professionals share career opportunities with Hobart men

(July 22, 2004) Minneapolis, M.N.– For the second consecutive year, Hobart College graduate and Trustee of the Colleges Horace D. Allen has given to students and young alums of his alma mater something that he never had–a mentor of color.

Growing up in a working-class family in Syracuse, N.Y., and studying economics at Hobart, Allen didn't have contact with white-collar professionals, let alone black business executives. In fact, Allen did not have a professional relationship with an executive of color until he began his career at the IBM Corporation in 1985. Determined that this would not be the case for future graduates, he created an externship for Hobart students of color. Last spring, five young men from Hobart traveled to Minneapolis to attend seminars and meetings with top leaders from IBM, the Minnesota Vikings and other businesses in the Twin Cities area. Allen, co-founder and chief operating officer of TSG Server & Storage in Edina, Minn., was their host.

“I wanted the students to see the things I've done and other business executives have done so they can say 'I can do that too,'” says Allen. “If nothing else, maybe I can improve someone's dreams and create the desire to do more and achieve more.”

This year, during the July 4th holiday weekend, Allen invited two recent Hobart alumni, Lawrence Moultrie '04 and Oscar Veras Jr. '04, along with three current Hobart men of color, Harry Gomez '05, Alex Bell '05 and Altwon Webster '06 to Minnesota. The five visited businesses executives from netASPx, Polaris Industries, Inc., Minnesota Wild NHL Franchise and Equus Computer Systems, Inc., as well as social services officials from the local YMCA. They also enjoyed a Twins game and a participated in a golf clinic.

Bell, of Bronx, N.Y., appreciated the opportunity. “It was awesome,” he says. “Before this trip, I didn't know too many people who worked in senior management positions, let alone a CEO from a publicly held company that made $10 million a year in salary and stock options. The experience makes me eager to achieve bigger things. I am grateful to Mr. Allen, and hope someday I will be in the position to give back as he has.”

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