Gregorio Gutiérrez/ Jim Sánchez, Conexión San Ángelo 

SAN ANGELO – When Adriana Balcorta arrived in San Angelo 13 years ago, she fell in love with the community so much due to its laid-back West Texas friendliness, that she decided to transfer all her college subjects and finish her education here.   

Balcorta who is a development specialist/ certified business advisor with the Small Business Development Center, recently sat down with Conexión for an interview about her life, her goals and her future.

Conexión asked Adriana what her goals were when she came this country? 

“I came with a goal to learn how to speak English.” “I knew a little bit of English when I lived in Mexico, but I wanted to be able to interact with those who spoke English.” So how I started was that I came through an international student exchange program,” said Adriana. 

Upon arrival in San Angelo in 2004, Balcorta started her classes and like them a lot, to the point that she decided to transfer over all her courses to the U.S. and finish her career here.

“However, once you become an exchange student you only have a year to find a job.” “I took full advantage of this as I was able to work at Wells Fargo as a Credit Analyst Assistant.” It was during that time that I started my masters.

After I worked at the University (Angelo State), I later learned there was an opening in the Small Business Development Center and I knew that’s where I wanted to be,” said Balcorta. 

Adriana was a little concerned that with a lack of business experience, she might not get the job. Her fears were alleviated when SBDC, Director, Dave Erickson gave her the job. 

“I spoke to him about my personal experience in family business and what I had done at Wells Fargo and Armstrong Backus, and that’s how I began my job at SBDC."

Adriana, how were you able to handle the various “hats you wore” from being a college student to a professional and now a mother?

“It was because I loved being around the university and everything about it.” “She would ask herself, “‘how am I going to be able to help someone in starting a business or get a loan or expand their business’”. but I took that huge step to do this. And, I got major help from my boss, from observing my co-workers and attending seminars and classes through the Internet. And, I also learned a lot from my clients.”

“How long have you been with the Small Business Development Center?

I started on October 15, 2012 so it has been five years,” Adriana said.  “I’ve learned so many new things along the way.”  "Just like I received this opportunity, I also have another one to expand my professional career to the next level."

In concluding the interview, Adriana was asked what were her short-term goals?

“I want to be a good mom, I want to continue to grow professionally and to have the opportunity to meet people,” Balcorta said.

Adriana whose English has expanded with the development of her professional career as a specialist/ certified advisor, stated being bilingual opened many doors for her to do what she does on a daily basis---help people accomplish their goal of becoming business owners.

“I want to say thank you to my employer Dave and my colleagues for training me and giving me this opportunity to gain this valuable experience, as I have learned so much!”. 

Balcorta received both her M.B.A. and B.B.A in Finance & International Business from Angelo State University. She is originally from Chihuahua, Mexico, where she was actively involved in her father’s business. In San Angelo, Adriana has worked in the commercial lending at a local bank, as well as interning for an accounting firm in town.

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