On September 16 2020, the University of Wisconsin-Parkside will be celebrating its annual Hispanic Heritage month with a variety of virtual events. The annual celebration highlights community leaders during its kickoff week, and includes a variety of cultural discussions on topics related to the Latinx community. As part of the annual celebration the University honors community Leaders with the Hispanic Leadership Award for historical contributions that benefit the Hispanic community in areas such as Philanthropy, education, social services, and youth services. Community members are invited to nominate an impactful leader from the Racine or Kenosha Counties.
The University will host a variety of speakers from various corners of the US, including distinguished leaders of the Chicano movement. Jose Angel Gutierrez, recognized by the United States Hispanic Leadership Conference in 2019 as the recipient for the 2019 Hispanic Hero Award, will be speaking on the importance of Leadership in our communities and the impact of voting in this crucial election year. Other speakers include Ms. Yessenia Funes who presents a call to action for Latinx communities to play a role in the Environmental Justice Movement. Jasmine Morales will address human trafficking, shedding light on how, despite the pandemic, issues such as human trafficking are still prevalent in today’s world. Amongst the list of events are faculty presentations, virtual performances and a DACA panel which will open dialogue from students and community on such an important topic that impacts a large population of students in our community and across the nation.
The Raices (Roots) Project is a collection of historical archives that is being launched as part of UW-Parkside’s Hispanic Heritage Celebrations and is also part of a much larger effort from Universities across the state of Wisconsin to collect historical anecdotes, stories, and historical photos that capture the Hispanic narrative. The launching of this historical project contributes to the efforts of other collectives and collaborates with historical societies to create digital records that can best highlight and recollect the stories of various Hispanic groups in all of Wisconsin. Entries are being accepted via an electronic survey in both English and Spanish here.
Through these virtual events and projects, UW-Parkside strives to continue to build community amongst all its students and build spaces that celebrate diversity and inclusion. These efforts go hand in hand with the universities mission of becoming a Hispanic Serving Institution. The percentage of Hispanic/Latinx students at UW Parkside is over 17%.
The university will also continue to reach the Spanish speaking students and community members via its weekly podcast Parkside Presente, hosted by Giovanna Gutierrez. The podcast will have a lineup of interesting topics related to Hispanic Heritage month as well during the annual celebration. This will also be a great way for Spanish speakers who miss the virtual events to learn about them via the podcast.
For more information on the series of events please visit www.uwp.edu/hispanicheritage