Hybrid MBA 2023 Social Impact Scholarship, HMBA students making a difference

The Social Impact Scholarship was created to recognize an incoming Hybrid MBA (HMBA) student who demonstrates Foster’s values of commitment to diversity, inclusion, and community building through their leadership in advocacy for others, primarily underserved communities. HMBA is honored to recognize this year’s recipient, Marcos Osorio, class of 2025.

“Foster Hybrid MBA is thrilled to award Marcos Osorio the 2023 Social Impact Scholarship. He exemplifies Foster’s commitment to proactively lifting-up others and utilizing innovation to solve unstructured, real-world problems. Marcos’ personal experiences with social impact programs, coupled with his own non-profit initiatives and current consultancy role, drives his potential to impact those who most need assistance.

– Jodey Farwell, Director, Foster Hybrid MBA

Marcos Osorio, Hybrid MBA – 2023 Social Impact Scholarship recipient (Class of 2025)

Marcos Osorio, our 2023 HMBA Social Impact Scholarship recipient is Co-founder at STRIDE Strategy Partners, a consulting firm that specializes in serving non-profit organizations, government entities, and philanthropic partners. His firm is dedicated to providing strategic guidance and expert solutions to drive the success and impact of clients in their respective fields. Marcos cofounded Leading and Enrichment through Education Daily (with fellow UCLA students), a community based organization aiding underserved communities in the college application process, wrap around services (academic, mentorship, health and wellness), financial aid and parent outreach and organizing.  A lifetime volunteer in a variety of capacities, Marcos was recently profiled by the Red Cross about his commitment to service.

Pursuing the Hybrid MBA at Foster is a natural progression in my journey of advocacy. I am eager to enhance my leadership skills and gain a comprehensive understanding of business principles that will enable me to create a more significant impact in the communities I serve. I firmly believe in the wisdom of the Horace Mann quote that “education is the great equalizer,” and I am deeply passionate about leveraging education as a tool for positive change. I aspire to return to my community armed with the business acumen and skills to expand on my work, establishing an organization that creates paths to resources, education, and job placement for those historically left behind.

I am committed to amplifying the voices of marginalized communities and utilizing my skills and knowledge to promote positive change.”

In conversation with Marcos Osorio, 2023 Hybrid MBA Social Impact Scholarship recipient

This week, Marcos shares his reflections of the first quarter and the impact of the HMBA program and scholarship award in his personal and professional life.

Congratulations on completing your first quarter of the Hybrid MBA program!  As you reflect on Autumn quarter, how are you feeling as you prepare for the in-person immersion next month?     

My first HMBA quarter was a multifaceted journey marked by both challenges and triumphs. The intensity of the course load was particularly demanding, as it required a significant amount of time and dedication to stay on top of the academic requirements. Additionally, striking a balance between my family obligations and the workload from my efforts to expand a small business presented its own set of trials. Juggling these responsibilities sometimes stretched my capabilities, but it was a valuable learning experience in managing time and priorities effectively.

Despite these challenges, the unwavering support from my family and classmates played a pivotal role in my journey, providing me with the encouragement and assistance needed to navigate the demanding times. I found the camaraderie that was developed with my team members deeply rewarding. Collaborating with a diverse group of individuals who were equally driven and committed to academic and professional excellence was invigorating. The team dynamics were excellent, and the collective effort not only enhanced our learning experiences but also led to the development of lasting professional relationships.

As you know, the HMBA commitment to our student community is to create a learning and networking environment that is multidirectional, genuine, and relevant to your daily professional life.  How are we doing so far?   

The HMBA program has been a transformative experience, significantly impacting both my professional and personal life. One of the most profound changes has been the evolution of my leadership style. The program has facilitated a deep understanding of my personal leadership mission and has been instrumental in shaping me into the type of leader I aspire to be. It has provided me with the tools and frameworks necessary to lead with purpose and influence both within the workplace and beyond. The emphasis on building effective teams was another cornerstone of my development. Through collaborative projects, we learned the intricate dynamics of building a team and the importance of fostering a cohesive work environment.  Additionally, the HMBA curriculum has bolstered my confidence in financial management. I now have a stronger command of accounting principles, which has enhanced my capability to forecast future trends and make informed, data-driven decisions. This newfound proficiency has allowed me to contribute more strategically to my organization’s financial planning processes and has provided a valuable perspective in decision-making meetings.

What excites you as you think ahead to Winter quarter?

As I look ahead to the next quarter, the prospect of delving into strategic marketing and microeconomics is particularly exciting for me. These topics are not only intellectually stimulating but are also crucial for understanding the complex dynamics of today’s business world. Additionally, the Community and Equity course stands out as an essential component of next quarter’s lineup, fostering an environment that values diverse perspectives and promotes equitable practices. I am looking forward to our Career Management events and coaching sessions. Moreover, the opportunity to cultivate deeper relationships with my peers is something I am looking forward to. The interactions I have had thus far have been among the most rewarding aspects of my educational journey, and I’m keen on connecting with even more of my fascinating classmates in the coming quarter.

Social impact has multiple facets for you and your personal history. How did the scholarship criteria resonate with you? 

My first impactful experience came from my time in an after-school program managed by the Los Angeles Police Department. Through this program, I not only received support but also had the opportunity to explore various neighborhoods within our city. Witnessing the disparities in resources and opportunities compared to what we lacked back home inspired me to remain focused on my educational path. Later, I had the chance to volunteer and give back to the same community that had supported me. Working in Los Angeles’ underserved South Central regions, I recognized the need for comprehensive programs that addressed the needs of both graduating students and their parents to ensure equal opportunities for success. This inequality fueled my passion for advocating for educational equity and college access.

Understanding the importance of economic empowerment in breaking the cycle of inequality, I established a non-profit that focused on education and community engagement. Managing a team that organized events, workshops, and trainings, we fostered dialogue, celebrated diversity, and promoted opportunities for upskilling in the community.

Throughout my career, I have had the privilege of leading in a foundation role that allowed me to focus on economic development, with race equity as the backbone to the work. Collaborating with local nonprofits and businesses, I initiated programs that provided job training and skill development to individuals from underserved communities. By fostering strong partnerships with employers, we ensured that program graduates had access to sustainable career opportunities. Witnessing lives transform as individuals secured stable jobs and achieved financial independence affirmed the significance of such initiatives in creating stronger communities.

What does the HMBA Social Impact Scholarship award mean for you?

Receiving the Social Impact Scholarship is not only a profound honor but also a pivotal catalyst for my future endeavors. This scholarship represents more than just financial support; it is an affirmation of my commitment to driving positive change within my community. It enables me to pursue my educational goals with an undivided focus. The scholarship will allow me to deepen my understanding of societal issues and equip me with the necessary tools to address them effectively. I plan to leverage the knowledge and skills acquired through my studies to develop innovative solutions to pressing social problems. My aim is to bridge gaps in access to resources and opportunities, particularly for underserved populations.

Foster’s Hybrid MBA Social Impact Scholarship

Our mission at UW Foster is to develop inclusive leaders who embody the Foster School Values of bettering humanity by creating leaders who foster community. These scholarships will be awarded to admitted Hybrid MBA students who demonstrate Foster’s values of commitment to diversity, inclusion, and community building through their leadership in advocacy for others, primarily underserved communities. These renewable scholarships, awarded annually for up to $15,000, are intended to attract students who live these values with a passion to continue fostering having a positive impact through inclusive leadership in their communities.

Applications from incoming students, who can demonstrate their passion, commitment, and advocacy of historically underserved communities, are encouraged and welcome!

Learn more about Scholarships here, or email [email protected].

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