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ILR 75th Anniversary

Celebrating the 75th Anniversary of the ILR School

Jenniffer Flores ’22

Jenniffer Flores

I am Jenniffer Flores, a junior in Cornell University’s ILR school pursuing minors in business and inequality studies. I was born in Guayaquil, Ecuador, but grew up in the South Bronx. Growing up, I realized I had a love for working with people and in high school decided I wanted to pursue it. I envision myself using my social skills on a regular basis to lead and help my community reach its potential instead of them being told they could be great and not be given the tools to become it.

How did ILR change you?

Thinking back on who I was my freshman year, I can say ILR changed me. ILR has taught me how to learn and not simply memorize information, how to embrace my identities and how to identify my weaknesses early on so I can ask for help before it’s too far along into the semester. This change happened because ILR students, professors and staff work diligently to foster an environment that is caring and supportive. 

How are you making an impact through your experiences at ILR?

As a child, I loved being the line-leader of the class. As a college student, my love of being a leader remains. I am now co-founder of RoyalBLU, a financial literacy organization for minority students. This idea came to me after learning about the disproportionate rates of financial literacy within poor communities versus wealthier communities. 

Since ILR has taught me the importance of work, of a worker and of a good leader, I realized that I want to be a leader within my own community, to teach the younger generation that leaders do come from the South Bronx, despite the contradicting narrative. 

How might the mission of ILR help shape the next 75 years of work, labor and employment?

Considering the changes the world is going through, I am sure ILR students will be necessary within the future of work, labor, and employment. ILR students are taught to be open minded, to question, to think ahead, to be understanding, to take risks, to take responsibility. ILR has taught me to not limit my vision to only my perspective because that limits learning. With ILR students entering the workforce, I am confident we will reach more equitable work practices and an overall more fulfilling work environment.

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