María Cervantes
María Cervantes

Maria Cervantes is a native of Orange County. She has more than 16 years of experience advocating for children’s wellbeing and access to quality education in the non-profit field. Over the past 14 years, she has worked with the MIND Research Institute (MIND), an Irvine, California-based nonprofit organization, as the Community Partnerships Director, she raises funds and creates national collaborative partnerships.

Maria’s work has focused on making ST Math- a STEM focused program accessible for Latino, under-served students, and students with disabilities. She considers herself an ambassador for students and educators and invites the community to share and support MIND’s mission. MIND currently reaches more than 1.2M students, 53,000 teachers, and 3,950 schools in 47 states.  By collaborating with philanthropic and community partners, Maria has been working with schools to gain the resources and support they need to close the mathematical achievement gap in the schools that partner with MIND.

Previously, Maria worked for the Child Abuse Prevention Center and the Santa Ana Unified School District (SAUSD). She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Services from California State University, Fullerton.  She is actively involved in volunteer efforts for SAUSD, the Orange County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, NHBWA, Latina Vida the TELACU Foundation and Soccer Clubs among various other non-profits.

Maria has been recognized for her tremendous work and impact on behalf of our community’s young students, helping them become tomorrow’s hi-tech professionals with MIND Research Institute’s game-changing ST Math education program. In May 2014, Maria was featured in the Orange County Business Journal as Women in Business nominee. In April 2014, she  was recognized as the Ambassador of the Year for the Orange County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.  In November 2013, she received the Comerica Bank, Best of LA Women's Business Award, in acknowledgement of her leadership and contribution in Southern California. In April 2013, Maria was named a Fun Fearless Latina by Cosmopolitan for Latinas as one of twelve individuals in the community (including actress Michelle Rodriguez and journalist/TODAY Show co-anchor Natalie Morales) who have made outstanding strides in their field.

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