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LAREDO MORNING TIMES: Local students encouraged to join ranks of State Department

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Laredo, March 31, 2016 | comments

Local students encouraged to join ranks of State Department

Congressman Henry Cuellar welcomed Ambassador Arnold Chacon to Texas A&M International University on Thursday to give remarks on the importance of students and young professionals pursuing careers at the State Department and across the federal government.

Joining Chacon, who served as the U.S. government’s top representative to Guatemala from 2011 to 2014, were Diplomat in Residence John Roberts and State Department Recruiter Faisal Khan.

Chacon currently serves as director general of the Foreign Service and director of human resources at the State Department.

The visit by the State Department officials coincided with TAMIU’s Business and Hospitality Career Fair, held Thursday in the university’s Student Center Rotunda.

“It is vital that we encourage greater diversity, especially among Hispanics, in the workforce at the State Department and across the federal government,” Cuellar said. “Currently, there are roughly 54 million Hispanics living in the U.S. Despite making up 17 percent of the population in 2015, they only represented 8.4 percent of the federal civilian workforce, according to the federal government’s Office of Personnel Management.

"In order to ensure a federal government with unique ability and perspectives, we should place a special emphasis on recruiting, hiring, retaining and promoting multilingual talent from diverse backgrounds. Luckily, this sort of work has already begun at the State Department.

"That is why I personally invited Ambassador Chacon to Laredo, where the Department could see our diverse group of promising college students and working professionals. I thank (TAMIU) President (Ray) Keck and the excellent staff at TAMIU for encouraging students to apply and for making this event a success.”

Chacon added: “We’re here to recruit diverse, talented men and women who can effectively carry out the Department’s mission of shaping a peaceful, prosperous, just and democratic world. We thank Congressman Cuellar for extending this opportunity to speak with the students at TAMIU.”

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