Oscar is the Head of Placement at USP, in addition to helping dozens of student-athletes every year to achieve their dream of competing in collegiate athletics, he oversees the work of our team of advisors, coordinating efforts, providing constant support and advice.
This is the third interview of a series we did to all our staff members, we want you to really get to know us, understand who we are, where we come from and why are we so passionate about college athletics and helping young students and athletes secure their future.
USP: Tell us about your background. Where are you from? Where did you grow up?
Oscar: I was born not too long ago on the beautiful island of Cuba. While sports were the least talked subject in my household, I just loved every sport since childhood. I arrived in the US at 19 years old, and my goal was always being involved in anything related to sports.
USP: Where did you go to college?
Oscar: I did my first two years of my undergrad in Miami Dade College and my final two at Florida International University (FIU), from where I hold a Bachelor in Economics. I also received another Bachelor from Florida National in Accounting.
USP: Who have been your strongest influences in life?
Oscar: I like to think that there have been great influences in my life, but my mother is someone that I feel has always cheered for me and has been in my corner since day one. She has influenced me and taught me the right path.
USP: What led you to this career? How did you end up at USP?
Oscar: What led me to this career is a crazy sports obsession. I have always known that whatever I would do in life it had to be related to sports. I answered an ad to what seemed like my dream job in 2014 and since that day I have not worked a day.
USP: When people ask you "what do you do for a living?" How do you respond?
Oscar: I used to explain the whole concept and then changed to the "sports agent" answer but lately, I have been saying that I am involved in advising students and families into the jump to college.
USP: What is your proudest experience since working with USP?
Oscar: Seeing student-athletes graduating and being successful in the workforce. Knowing that even if just a little, I have been able to contribute to their future.
USP: What is the main mistake you see in the recruiting process?
Oscar: The biggest mistake I see our students make is when they do not trust our advice. The biggest mistake I see other students-athletes make is not being completely informed and seeing how they end up on Universities that are not the right fit for them.
USP: Can you tell us about one (or two) Client story you will never forget.
Oscar: A couple of years ago, one of our students called me right after committing to a school during a visit. I found out later that I was the first call he made to communicate his decision. The father even jokingly said that my relationship with the player was so close that he called me even before his own father, as the student felt his success was mine as well. I like to think that we go beyond just a job and create a connection with the students we impact. That day it was one of the most fulfilling days of my life.
USP: What is your most important advice for a student and for the parent?
Oscar: Educate yourself. There is a lot of information and you need to have the right tools to afront the process. Is not rocket science but sometimes having someone on your corner that guides you all the way is the right thing for you. Knowledge is the most important advice I can give.
When asked for a short bio for the USP website, this is how Oscar described himself:
Proud to be the first 10-year-old kid ever to choose Baseball Statistics Book as its favorite. I love all sports and to this day, I can not believe I work in my dream job. Guiding student-athletes is my passion and impacting their future is my calling.
Thank you, Oscar!