Congratulations Anthony Santiago on joining Meta as Project Manager for Community Operations!
Anthony shared a bit of his story:
“My family emigrated from the Dominican Republic to Paterson, New Jersey in the 1980s. My mom raised us. We didn’t have a lot of money, but I grew up with a lot of love in my household. Whenever I went anywhere, my mom would say, ‘Vaya con Dios.’
In high school, I met several role models through the Junior Year Reserve Officers’ Training (JROTC). They were retired Army soldiers, and they helped me visualize a path in service to my country.
Only 10% of the kids from my high school went to college, but with the help of these mentors, I ended up getting accepted to St. John’s University and joining their Army ROTC program.
I was the first in my family to go to college. My mom beamed with pride when I got in. She told all of her friends! Later on, when she saw me in my ‘dress blues,’ she cried.
I joined the Army to become a better version of myself. You hear that kind of thing in commercials, but I believed it and that mentality helped me. I learned how to lead. At 23, I was leading 40 people in Iraq, making life and death decisions. That experience solidified my resilience.
When I started working with BreakLine Education, a recruiter from Meta contacted me. A company that was such a household name reached out to me? That experience built a lot of confidence.
I contacted BreakLine alum Harry Roberts Jr, and I was blown away by how willing he was to give his time to someone he’d never met before. It showed me the strength of the BreakLine community.
Over time, I received an offer from Meta. I’m part of the team making sure that the 2 billion daily users on our platforms have a positive experience.
My upbringing taught me that you have to be gritty to get through life. Failure is part of any path to success. But be kind to yourself and know that it’s all part of the process.
A lot of people held the door open for me, even though they didn’t know me. I’m ready to do the same.”