SHRM Emerging Professional Champions: Rose Hernandez

Andrew Deichler By Andrew Deichler February 17, 2021
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SHRM Emerging Professional Champions: Rose Hernandez

​As part of an effort to recognize the next generation of human resource leaders, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) will be naming students, alumni and others who work on behalf of emerging professionals as SHRM Emerging Professional Champions. We begin with a look at Rose Hernandez, a student at Texas A&M University–San Antonio and president of the San Antonio SHRM Student Chapter.

Hernandez describes herself as having a passion for helping and connecting with people. She initially planned to go into social work, but concerns over job security and compensation led her to rethink her career path. She began to consider HR while working as an office manager for Arber Inc., a San Antonio-based security services firm.

"I always have found myself mediating situations and assisting with solutions," she said. "People are my passion. Regardless of my position, my heart is driven to help people understand each other, or at least try to help accomplish that. In HR, I am able to bridge the connection between employers and employees."

Hernandez settled on Texas A&M after completing her associate degree at Palo Alto College in San Antonio. She was looking for community on and off campus, as well as a convenient commute, and Texas A&M offered all those things. Cost was also a key factor, and the university's tuition was the lowest in the city for an undergraduate school.

She got involved with SHRM in her first semester as a sophomore at Texas A&M, after learning about the organization through classmates. She describes herself as a shy person and admitted to initially feeling intimidated. But the more meetings she attended and aspiring HR professionals she met, she realized SHRM was a good fit.

Hernandez thrived so much that the following year, she was elected president of her student chapter. That experience has challenged her, but it has also shown her the "wins" of membership and taught her a lot about work/life balance. "Volunteering as president and being a student, a full-time employee, mother and wife has taught me the true meaning of balance," she said. "In all, my experience has been rewarding, and I encourage all members to be active members."

While studying at Texas A&M, Hernandez has continued to work at Arber. At a time when internships are scarce due to companies making cutbacks and operating remotely, she believes that this job will provide her with substantial experience that will help her transition into an HR position within her company after graduating later this year.

"Our current environment is probably the most unpredictable environment anyone has ever seen, and because of this, I believe both job experience and internships carry significant weight," she said. "You have some prospective employers who want to hire someone who can hit the ground running and use their previous HR experience as traction, and then you have employers who want to hire for fresh perspectives and new ideas."

After graduation, Hernandez plans to pursue SHRM certification. But first, she's going to take some much-deserved R&R. "I hope to take a vacation and celebrate once I graduate," she said. "I will celebrate for all the effort, the hard work and for being the first out of 10 siblings in my family to attain a college degree."

Do you know an outstanding SHRM student leader? How about a former SHRM student member who is achieving great success professionally? Or maybe a SHRM professional member, student chapter advisor or professional chapter that is advancing student membership and emerging professional programming? Nominate them as a SHRM Emerging Professional Champion today.

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