Futuro Leaders

West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
Academic Level
Community-Based Organization
Issue Area
Key Personnel
Program Focus


The mission of Futuro Leaders, formerly Building Bridges Through Education, is to help grow a dynamic and inclusive workforce in West Michigan and impact the workplace by cultivating a Latino talent pipeline. Futuro Leaders is an education and workforce development program with a goal to prepare and connect high potential Latino college students with the tools and opportunities to reach their career goals while educating and encouraging businesses to invest in their communities by creating job and internship opportunities. Futuro Leaders is grounded as a collective impact initiative that partners with Michigan industry-leading partners and Michigan colleges and universities.

Program Description

Futuro Leaders supports pathways to success for future leaders by providing coaching to Latino college students. Face-to-face and online, their collective effort serves all majors, developing career-ready characteristics and sparking leadership in all Michigan colleges & universities. The program fosters success and builds upon the skills and assets of Latino talent that promote candidacy for career placement. Students in the program live as everyday examples of leadership principles and skills they’ve gained from education, lived experiences, and Futuro Leader's experiential programming. Additionally, BBTE’s signature Get Focused events were designed by Futuro Leaders Interns to focus on early career readiness and placement with an average attendance of 130 students and hiring managers. Finally, in response to the need to support students in resume writing and job interviews, Futuro Leaders launched a fellowship, where students from colleges and universities across Michigan gain skills in emotional intelligence, online branding, and design thinking.


  • BBTE’s initial planning and design work received input from over 100 Michigan Latinx college students— perspectives that became key in the blueprints of a pilot program. In 2019, BBTE launched a soft pilot of internship placements that provided coaching and mentoring from the initial application to the end of the internship. Of those initial six participants, 100% successfully completed the internship and 67% were offered continuing employment (part-time jobs or full-time positions).
  • Data analysis in January of 2020 showed BBTE serving 160 students statewide and working with 52 (33%) to find internship/job placement. Of the 100 applications submitted, 27% were offered interviews and 6% received employment offers. Placements have been greatly impacted by the pandemic, but BBTE continued with virtual programming and by the end of 2020 doubled the number of students served to 300.

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