Gloria Guzman wasn’t testifying before Congress, but she was on a big stage in the nation’s capital recently.
Guzman, economic and financial education specialist at the Atlanta Fed’s Miami Branch, made presentations at a professional development conference that brought more than 1,500 teachers, school administrators, and businesspeople to Washington, D.C., in early July.
She conducted a session about the Fed’s role in the economy and helped with another session on how schools cultivate connections with partners in the business community. This was at the major annual conference of the National Academy Foundation (NAF), a leader in efforts to prepare young people for college and careers. Founded in 1982 by Sanford Weill, chairman emeritus of Citigroup Inc., the foundation fosters partnerships between the business and education communities to provide opportunities to underserved students.
Miami schools shine in D.C.
Guzman and the Atlanta Fed’s Miami Branch are heavily involved with schools in the Miami area that offer NAF-affiliated programs. In fact, one of those schools, Southwest Miami High School, was presented the foundation’s highest award at the Washington conference. Seven of the 22 award nominees and two of three finalists were Miami-Dade County schools.
The NAF helps set up academies inside public schools. The academies focus on areas including finance, engineering, and entrepreneurship and offer practical courses in job interview skills and certifications in widely used software applications like Microsoft Excel.
Extensive ties with NAF schools in Miami
The Atlanta Fed’s Guzman has an extensive relationship with the NAF. She recently became vice chair of the Academy of Finance Advisory Board in Miami-Dade. For the past two years, she chaired a committee that develops programs for students and professional development opportunities for teachers.
In that role, Guzman helped to organize and oversee the first Mega NAF Student Industry Conference in Miami Beach in May. More than 1,500 high school students from 27 schools in Miami-Dade County attended the conference, whose speakers included Microsoft’s U.S. chief technology officer and Google’s Global Education Evangelist.
Several other employees from the Atlanta Fed’s Miami office also helped with the conference. The Miami Branch of the Atlanta Fed also holds career days for academy students.