The first black Brazilian approved at MIT MBA sold popsicles in childhood

The first black Brazilian approved at MIT MBA sold popsicles in childhood

Since little Wellington Vittorino26, have already heard from the family that the change in their reality will come from education. A former public school student and first black at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Brazil approved to do an MBA in the United States “at home, there was nothing left, but nothing was left.” One of the most prestigious universities in the world.

Born in Nitroi, Rio, he lived a large part of his life in São Gonçalo. After attending all grades in public schools, in the final year of high school, he received a scholarship to an elite school south of Rio de Janeiro. In the entrance examination, he passed all the universities and scored one thousand marks in the composition of the National High School Examination (Anime). The young man opted for a full scholarship from the University for All Program (ProUni) in business administration courses with an eye on opportunities to invest in entrepreneurship.

Wellington Vittorino is the first black Brazilian to pass the MIT MBA.

Photo: Disclosure / Estadow

At the age of eight, Wellington helped his father sell products as a street vendor on the beach in Sakrema in the Lagos region of Rio. On a hot afternoon, he offered the product to military police officers, who, in addition to buying all the boy’s twenty popsicles, authorized him to sell them inside the military police battalion. According to Wellington, this was the first turning point of his life.

Popsicles expanded into a candy business and opened twenty-three candy stores around the city. Involved family, hired aunt and another Freelancer To assist with delivery. Until the age of 17, he never missed a sale in the battalion. He also attributed the institute’s colonel to his newspaper, who, in addition to collecting good grades, received a 50% scholarship at a private school in São Gonçalo. The other half Wellington insisted on paying with candy benefits.

In 2012, while attending a lecture on business and career, he sent an email to the speaker in which he told his story. This time, he won a full scholarship to study for the third year of high school at Escola Perk. The beginning was disturbing: the low grade shook the boy, who would wake up at 4 in the morning and go to school at 7 o’clock. He only went home around 8 pm and lacked time to study and to fill the gap between public school and private school.

“The beginning was overwhelming, there was no way to compare the schools I studied. Even in what I was better at, I had difficulty”, he says. “In the first two months, I failed six subjects”. However, he was not discouraged. The method found by a former teacher was that the young man would find a place close to the school to live. Wellington went to sleep in a teachers’ room at a public school in Leblon, close to Escola Perk. Supporting the privacy of family, teachers and principals and cleaning staff was necessary to keep sleeping at school for eight months.

Prolider and institute four

In Ibmec, he stood out as a partner and the watchdog of the institution. In 2015, he participated in a selection process at Fundação Estudar and was selected from 24 out of over 60 thousand candidates. At the end of the program, he won a scholarship of the year award given by the founder, businessman and economist, Jorge Paulo Lemon.

The young men are the founders of the Instituto Four, an organization that strives to train leaders to solve the biggest problems in Brazil.

The young men are the founders of the Instituto Four, an organization that strives to train leaders to solve the biggest problems in Brazil.

Photo: Disclosure / Estadow

Realizing the importance of youth in solving problems in the country, the idea was to make them proleaders, a means of helping and training young leaders in Brazil. “I always say that, with each step we take in life, and it grows, we need to take other people with us. This is one of the main objectives of the Proleader”, he said.

The Four Institute also stems from Project Idea, a non-profit organization that selects, trains and develops young leaders thinking of ways to solve Brazil’s challenges. The organization is responsible for Prolyder, which trained over 200 leaders to work in public, political and entrepreneurial environments.

The pursuit of diversity is also part of the principles of the institute. “Since 2016, we have already talked about gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, social class and especially the inclusion and diversity of people from different regions of Brazil. We are outside the South and Southeast axes Looking for youth, ”he says. Prolyder already has young graduates who became mayors, councilors, investors, he also received awards in academic and professional fields at Harvard University, United States, in addition to two approved.

The institute is also responsible for the Four Summits, a conference that aims to discuss Brazil’s core strategic areas, with a focus on innovation and technology. In the 1st edition, 2019, around 700 people were brought together in two days of the event, with more than 90 speakers among the country’s businessmen, politicians and young leaders.

MIT and future in politics

The dream of studying at MIT came from graduation. After spending some time traveling to the United States to visit American universities, financed by the Educar Foundation and by other entrepreneurs, the desire to attend an MBA only increased. He tried twice and passed a second time

Now, the young man is preparing to go to Boston. There are plans to start a two-year course in August. The MBA program confers the title of Master of Business. For training, Wellington will be stepping away from the executive board of the four institutes for a while, but does not intend to leave the institute.

Before being approved at MIT, Wellington traveled to the USA and visited the largest US universities.

Before being approved at MIT, Wellington traveled to the USA and visited the largest US universities.

Photo: Disclosure / Estadow

He also does not rule out the possibility of running for public office. “First I want to work and contribute to the business sector for twenty years. And then, yes, to enter political life. I work long hours as mayor, governor and, who knows, One day, run for president, ”he says. .

“Public policies are fundamental to reducing social inequality in Brazil. Many of them are responsible for breaking the cycle of poverty in our country”. For the current government, he noted the need to invest in youth. “Brazil has the demographic bonus of many young people, it is necessary to provide opportunities for young people to study and work for everyone”, he concluded.

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Sarah Gracie

About the author: Sarah Gracie

Sarahis a reporter covering Amazon. She previously covered tech and transportation, and she broke stories on Uber's finances, self-driving car program, and cultural crisis. Before that, she covered cybersecurity in finance. Sarah's work has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Politico, and the Houston Chronicle.

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