“And so, I think just being in that place with others that looked like me, whose narratives or stories and career journeys were similar to my own. And ultimately, Latino professionals who are looking to really give back not only to community but to find their place where they can be truly valued.” Jessica Ledesma, Program Manager for the West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

During the most recent episode of A Passion to Serve (Season Three, Episode Ten) I had the opportunity to speak with Jessica Ledesma from the West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Jessica and I discuss her educational and professional experiences, with all its twists and turns, that has led her to this very moment.

Jessica is a first-generation high school and college graduate as well as West Michigan native. I enjoyed listening to Jessica describe how she enjoys the process of creating something new and having the ability to connect the dots to make that vision become reality.

Jessica and the West Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce are currently involved in the Building Bridges through Education (BBTE) initiative. The mission of BBTE is to advance Michigan Latinx college talent by bridging college and career through career connections and development to help grow a dynamic and inclusive workforce in Michigan. BBTE has served more than 300 Latinx talent since its October 2019 launch!

Proud BBTE sponsors include the DTE Foundation and Wege Foundation. Spectrum Health, Steelcase, Amway Corporation, Haworth, Bethany Christian Services, Grand Valley State University, Herman Miller, Kellogg, Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital, Hope College, Western Michigan University, and the West Michigan Whitecaps are initiative partners. You can learn more about the BBTE at


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