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Tito Valdes ’14 leads in and out of the classroom
05.23.11 |
Most typical first-year college students are worried about making new friends, learning how to cope away from home, and maintaining good grades. First-year student Roberto (Tito) Valdes, experienced all the typical first-year stress and more, while becoming an exceptional leader on campus.

A political science major and pre-law minor from Lebanon, Pa., Valdes is a Lebanon Valley Educational Partnership (LVEP) Scholar, a program that partners 8th–12th grade students from inner-city Lebanon with Lebanon Valley College students for mentoring. If the students maintain good academic standing, they may attend LVC with full tuition coverage for four years. During his first year at LVC, Valdes remained active with the LVEP program, serving as a mentor, and will serve as vice president for the 2011–12 school year.

In addition to LVEP, Valdes served as the class of 2014 president. He ran for re-election this past spring, and campaigned with t-shirts with his face on the front that read “Vote for Tito,” and displayed a large banner that hung in the stairway of Mund College Center with the same message. The results of the elections announced his winning race weeks later. As president during his first year, he has helped the class achieve great success, as they raised more than $1,200 in their first fundraiser.

“Tito is a very responsible and dedicated leader,” said McKenna Snyder, class of 2014 secretary. “It has been a fun learning experience working with him on student government. He helped us achieve a lot in our first year and I look forward to working with him for the next three years.”

“In my opinion, Tito has an extreme amount of passion for student government and he is an enthusiastic leader, who I am sure will play a major role in leadership on this campus for the years to come,” said Ashten O’Brien, student government president.

As a member of student government, Valdes has also initiated a Handicap Accessibility Committee, which looks to improve accessibility for diverse handicaps around campus.

“Tito impressed me with his leadership skills, his ability to not only see a problem on campus, issues with accessibility, but to have the willingness to step and take action,” said Dr. Yvonne Foster, director of disability services at the College. “Tito, also, looked at both sides of the issue, and gathered information from all of the appropriate offices, did not jump to any conclusions and wrote a factual piece for La Vie Collegienne, which brought attention and focus to campus handicap accessibility. I am excited to work with him and the Accessibility Task Force, and see what our phenomenal and “kind” students do in the future.”

Valdes is an active member of the College Democrats, and H.A.L.T., a campus organization that works to improve world hunger. Next year he will serve as a resident assistant. He has been recognized as First-Year Student Leader of the Year.

Outside of the classroom isn’t the only place where Valdes succeeds. In the classroom he is just as much of a leader.

“In class, you can see that he's sharp, makes connections, and is both funny and polite. He's got a great future ahead of him; students like him represent the future of this institution,” said Dr. John Hinshaw, chair and associate professor of history.

Dr. Chris Dolan, assistant professor of political science has also had Valdes in class: “He facilitates class discussion on a number of different topics, demonstrates mastery of course materials, and is very tolerant of the views of his classmates. He is always intellectually curious, motivated, and academically engaged in the material. Tito has certainly exceeded my standards.”

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