Alum of the Month

February 2011

February 2011
Sergio Argueta

Q & A:

  • What was your favorite class, who was your favorite professor, or what is your fondest memory of Hofstra?
    My experiences as a sociology student and campus leader frame my fondest memories of Hofstra University.  My introduction to the social sciences came by way of a rigorous academic program, under the tutelage of great professors who inspired me to challenge the world.  Simultaneously, while serving as president of Hofstra's Organization of Latin Americans, a student government senator, and community activist, theory quickly became applicable and practice inevitable.  Learning about society and our interactions as human beings enabled me to become an effective agent of change for the betterment of my community and those throughout the northeastern United States. 
  • What was your first job after graduating from Hofstra, and what was the most valuable thing you learned there?
    Upon graduating from Hofstra University, I continued serving as the gang specialist for the Nassau County Youth Board. Within a year I began serving as the full time executive director of S.T.R.O.N.G. Youth, Inc. (Struggling To Reunite Our New Generation). 
  • What is your field of specialty, and how did you come to work in the industry?
    After continuously seeing the futile loss of life due to gun, youth, and gang violence in my community, and those neighboring Hofstra University, I founded S.T.R.O.N.G. Youth, Inc.  S.T.R.O.N.G. has become one of the leading gang prevention/intervention agencies throughout the Northeast. Our aim is to educate young people on alternatives to gang life in an effort to prevent gang involvement.  We also develop and implement innovative intervention strategies for previously incarcerated youth who are seeking redirection and redemption.  We recently started our own screen print and embroidery business as a means of offering sheltered employment and opportunities to youth seeking a crime- and gang-free life. 

    S.T.R.O.N.G. has resulted in the greatest journey of all, reaching hundreds of thousands of people across our region, the nation, and countries abroad.  I have given keynote addresses at law enforcement conferences, colleges and universities.  Equally, if not more important, are the presentations at correctional facilities, detention centers, group homes, and alternative schools across the globe.  The love for youth and community is what led me to becoming involved in this profession.
  • What at Hofstra gave you your edge?
    Hofstra forged a long-lasting relationship with friends, professors, and administrators who eventually became some of my greatest allies in my quest to create opportunities for youth. 
  • What advice would you give current Hofstra students?
    An education within the classroom is only complemented by your active participation in the community, outside the classroom.  A well-rounded student who achieves academic success and contributes to the well-being of society and humanity will get much further in life than one who only excels academically.  As such, make sure you volunteer your time and services and, in the future, pay it forward.  
  • In one word, how would you describe Hofstra?
  • How do you plan to use your education for the betterment of society?
    Upon earning the Juris Doctor, I look forward to using my education in the areas of policy, public interest, and civil rights law.  I believe that creating a more just society will require a paradigm shift not only of individuals but of systems that lag behind change.  Legal scholarship complemented by civil action, or vice versa, has always resulted in monumental change.  The rule of law has been used to advocate on behalf of social justice, fairness and equality.  It has aided in speaking for the voiceless, fighting for those who cannot fend for themselves, and empowering populations that often feel powerless.  The rule of law in the heart and mind of an activist, organizer, and social worker, who puts community before personal interest, is the essence of the type of lawyer I hope to one day become.
Sergio Argueta

Sergio Argueta (B.A., 2003) is among the youngest and most influential community activists on Long Island. He is founder and executive director of S.T.R.O.N.G. Youth, Inc. (Struggling To Reunite Our New Generation), one of the leading gang prevention and intervention agencies in the northeastern United States.

He earned a bachelor's degree in sociology with a minor in political science from Hofstra University, where he served as president of Hofstra's Organization of Latin Americans and senator in the Student Government Association. He was awarded the Turner Fellowship at Stony Brook University, where he earned a master's degree in social work. Sergio recently became an adjunct criminal justice professor at Nassau Community College, the institution he credits with empowering him through education. He is currently pursuing a Juris Doctor at Touro College Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center.

Sergio has been the subject of many articles published in magazines and newspapers locally, nationally, and internationally, including Scholastic Magazine, New York Newsday, The New York Times, and Florida Sun-Sentinel.  He has appeared on various television and radio shows, including reports on CNN, The O'Reilly Factor, The John Gambling Show, Telemundo, Univision, Hot 97.1 F.M. Street Soldiers, WBAI, and BBC Radio & Television in London.  In 2003 Sergio served as the gang specialist for the Nassau County Youth Board; he is currently one of the leading experts on gangs and youth violence throughout the northeastern United States.

Sergio Argueta is regarded as a compelling speaker who has captured audiences throughout the nation and abroad. He is a charismatic, motivational speaker who transcends all boundaries in reaching his audience. His powerful presentations give profound insight on a host of modern-day issues involving violence, communities, education, and today's youth.