By: Itzel Medina
Reading through newsletters we tend to read about students, professors, or even the deans, but we rarely get to read stories about the academic advisors. Academic advisors are the people that are very involved in the students’ college career. “I have advised many students who have graduated from health career programs as MD’s, dentists, physician assistants, nurses, etc. and are helping to keep our community healthy. Many still send me Christmas cards with pictures of their families and that is very fulfilling,” said Hugo Mora-Torres, an academic advisor in the Department of Public Health and Recreation. A fun fact about him is he likes to garden. He is currently working on a “Salsa Garden” which contains 3 varieties of tomatoes, chilies, and herbs.
Hugo’s educational background is a Bachelor’s Degree in Anthropology with Specialization in Medical Anthropology and received a Masters Degree in Educational Counseling. “After careers in Medical School admissions Health Care Administration, and Managing Health Promotion programs I decided that my most fulfilling career has been helping students achieve their academic and career potential. So I went back to school to get my Masters degree, to be able to work in my current role.” said Hugo. He enjoys helping students get to where they need to be in order to succeed.
He mentioned that he still receives Christmas cards from his former students which is very fulfilling. It is important for students to meet with their academic advisors, to have that “continuity of advising”. Students do not have to visit their advisor everyday or every month, rather, he suggests meeting with an advisor at least once a semester or however often the student feels the need to meet.
One note of advice that Hugo wanted to share with current students is a quote that has a deep meaning for him from Louis Pasteur, “Chance favors the prepared mind.”
Hugo thinks of it as, “Enjoy learning and keep your mind open to new experiences and knowledge.” Something Hugo wanted to add is, “We are experiencing a remarkable period in human history. COVID-19, Global Warming and the political climate challenging the future of this world. However, as an optimist, I feel that we will make the best of it and we will, with a concerted human effort, make it a better place than we found it.”