in the spotlight
Leticia (right) and Veronica (middle) Becerril traveled from their native Mexico in the mid-’90s to earn degrees at Tri-State. Here are their stories:
Leticia Becerril ME ′93
After graduation, I was hired by Dow Chemical as a manufacturing engineer in their packaging lines. Dow′s pharmaceutical plant was located in my home town, Cuernavaca, Mexico. Nine months later, I moved to México City and worked for Procter & Gamble as a purchasing manager for their Latin American laundry and soap plants. For six years, I purchased chemicals from global vendors. This job gave me the opportunity to travel around the world, visiting Procter & Gamble and supplier plants, which was an incredible experience! In 1996, I married Jose Iragorri from my home town, and we have three children, Mariana, 11, Jose Manuel, 9, and Juan Diego, 8.
After our first child was born, we made a difficult decision. I quit the corporate world for more time with my family. After we returned to Cuernavaca, I founded Kukulcan, a Spanish language school. In business for the past decade, it serves over 2,000 Spanish immersion students of different places, ages and professions. Kukulcan hosts teenagers, college students, professionals in the healthcare, judicial and education fields, as well as retirees and others. I teach Spanish for college credit, professional proficiency or simply for those who want to travel and have fun!
At the time, attending Tri–State was my only experience being abroad and far from home, and this helped me mature. I learned to multi–task and was able to manage my everyday life as an engineering student, soccer player and resident assistant.
My greatest campus memories were made on the soccer field, in three–hour practices in all kinds of weather. I also remember those long nights at the dorm, studying at midnight for Dr. Tichenor′s calculus exams or Dr. Kundapur′s or Dr. Kumar′s solids or liquids quizzes. I remember those Sundays eating biscuits and gravy at the cafeteria and running to church with Dr. Zimmer and his wife Elaine, my wonderful host family! My memories include the never–ending meetings of the international students, during which we planned and talked and talked! I also recall the gatherings shared with the Norwegian, Polish, Bolivian, Peruvian, Spanish and Kuwaiti students, where everybody took turns playing their music.
I keep busy and fill my days with family and close friends. I also spend time at the soccer field, watching my kids play.
Veronica Becerril, MGT ′94
After graduation in ′94, I was hired by Procter & Gamble Latin America, with headquarters in Mexico City, as the consumer and market knowledge (CMK) manager for their Latin American dishwashing business. In CMK, our main responsibility is to put the consumer′s voice at the forefront of every business decision. Specifically, we integrate consumer, shopper and market understanding to catalyze business growth at the corporate, business unit, category, brand and initiative levels.
During my first three years, I was in charge of the direction of our Latin America dishwashing business. A few months prior to my third year, I was asked to move to Cincinnati, Ohio, as an international manager working for the global laundry business. This was a very exciting opportunity, as these requests are normally not offered to junior managers. I was honored to have been selected. I decided to make the move and in ′97 I moved to Cincinnati. The company wanted to explore new ways to innovate the laundry market for developed countries as a way to boost sales. My role was to find new ways to beat our competitors in meeting consumer needs, winning our customers′ hearts.
Most of my work was in the U.S., Europe and Japan, which gave me the opportunity to become familiar with different cultures in ways I never thought I would (ie., talking for hours about washing clothes)! During this assignment, I met my husband Scott Lazarczyk (who also works for Procter & Gamble – Global and North America Marketing Director of Febreze), and shortly thereafter they asked us to move to Caracas, Venezuela for another assignment.
We loved the idea, and thought it would be a great opportunity for Scott to immerse himself in my Latin American roots. We lived there almost four years. We loved the country and I had a fantastic personal and professional experience that I will never forget. I learned how to scuba dive, visited eight other countries, ran my first marathon and had our first son, Santiago, now 7. In ′05, we were asked to move back to Cincinnati, and that is when my second son, Tomas, now 5, was born. Two years later our little girl, Ina, now 3, arrived.
Throughout all of my moves, I continue to grow and excel at Procter & Gamble, and I′m currently the associate director in CMK Global Health Care for Foundational Growth Opportunities & Marketplace Assessment. As I have from the beginning, I love my work.
My time on campus took me away from my home, family and country, and played a large role in making me the person that I am today. I am open to new things, flexible, able to identify opportunities and willing to take risks.
There are too many campus memories to name, but among the top ones would be my times at the tennis courts, mentally preparing for each game, putting a strategy in place and just being there for my team. My time as a resident assistant, helping others and especially listening to the girls on my floor in their time of need is an important memory. I enjoyed spending three years on campus with my sister, Leticia, and will always remember the fun we had. My mom′s "surprise" birthday visits every year – Leticia was the queen of the logistics – were some of the best times of my life! Preparing for one of our famous International Nights, from nine months before it, to the day before or even a few hours before, made them truly successful! Other memories are my marketing and accounting classes; our famous macro economics; and our Sunday homework day after a great morning brunch at the cafeteria, with the memories of Saturday′s fun still lingering.
I am passionate about my family, my belief in God and knowing what I want, where I want to go and what my priorities are at each phase in life. I believe in working hard and playing hard, but always having FUN! I hope to spend the coming years with my family, running (I ran two marathons in under four hours) and dancing!
Please submit your photos from around the globe to firstname.lastname@example.org
This was taken in Oia, Santorini, Greece. The city (Oia) is located on the island of Santorini, Greece. Oia is known for the most beautiful sunsets in the world. The most common form of transportation on the island is by Motobike (hence the helmet).
Jennifer (Dawson) Spidel PSY ′05
So for the last two weeks I was in China for the company I work for, Iwis Drive Systems, LLC. This was a pretty interesting trip because I was the lead auditor for some pre–audits my company had to do with partnered factories. I got to find out how strong three factories′ quality systems were, as well as work on some corrective actions to make some of our products even better for the customer.
The trip wasn′t entirely about business, however. I was able to see some amazing things in China, as well as hang out with some of my contacts at the factories. They showed us some temples, the city of Changzhou, and I ate some pretty good food (some being the key word).
Casey Pierce, DET ′07
My husband and I are both 1981 TSU graduates, and our daughter is registered for fall (Class of 2014). Attached is a photo taken June 13, 2010, of our 14–year–old son, Ryan, wearing his Trine University T–shirt in Tel Aviv, Israel, overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. He could have taken any number of shirts, but he wanted to be sure to have his sister's college represented on this trip! Perhaps he′ll be in the class of 2018?!
Lisa Russakoff Gilman, ENG ′81 and Rex Gilman, ME ′81 and ADE ′90