Hispanic Heritage Month Activities Set at WT


Chip Chandler

Copy by Chip Chandler, 806-651-2124, [email protected]


CANYON, Texas — West Texas A&M University will celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with a series of events through its Office for Diversity and Inclusion.

Activities begin Sept. 15 with Dr. Rachel González-Martin’s “Quinceañera: Ritual, Celebration, and Coming of Age” at 6:45 p.m. Sept. 15 in the Hazlewood Lecture Hall at Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum.

The event is in connection with PPHM’s exhibition “Quinceañera Traditions” and the WT Distinguished Lecture Series.

A reception will precede the lecture at 6 p.m. To RSVP, visit PPHM’s event page.

PPHM will offer free museum admission from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 17, also in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month.

Activities will continue with a “Mi Gente” panel and plática, or conversation, featuring WT’s Dr. Priscella Correa, Baptist Community Services Professor of Nursing; Dr. George Pacheco Jr., assistant professor of communication studies; and Dr. Oscar Solis, Edwards Professor of Financial Planning.

“Mi Gente,” or “My People,” will begin at 6 p.m. Sept. 20 in the Legends Room inside the Jack B. Kelley Student Center. A reception will begin at 5:30 p.m.

The panelists will discuss the importance of financial literacy, health and wellness, and cultural identity. Attendees will have the opportunity to submit questions to the panelists for the plática.

Amarillo comedian and WT graduate Saul Rodriguez will headline Laughs and Loteria at 6 p.m. Oct. 4, also in the Legends Room. Following Rodriguez’s set, attendees will play loteria, a Mexican game of chance similar to bingo.

The month’s activities will conclude with another Distinguished Lecture Series event featuring Dr. Ellen Ochoa, the first Latina astronaut in space.

Ochoa will speak at 6 p.m. Oct. 17 in Legacy Hall inside the JBK Student Center.

Ochoa began her career as a researcher, then took part in four missions as an astronaut. She later was named director of the Johnson Space Center, the first Hispanic director and second female director of the center. She will discuss the importance of exposing minorities to STEM education, among other topics.

Other WT-affiliated Hispanic Heritage Month events will include a pair of Forgotten Frontera events through the Center for the Study of the American West.

Dr. Joel Zapata, a Mellon Fellow at the School for Advanced Research in Santa Fe, New Mexico, will present “Los Llaneros: Forgotten Histories of the Llano” at 3 p.m. Sept. 22 in the Thunder Room inside the Jack B. Kelley Student Center at WT. He also will lead “Forgotten Frontera Community Conversation” at 1:30 p.m. Sept. 24 at Caprock High School, 3001 S.E. 34th Ave. in Amarillo.

Both events are part of CSAW’s “Forgotten Frontera: The Mexican American Southern Plains” initiative, which was awarded a nearly-$150,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities in January.

All Hispanic Heritage Month events are free and open to the public.

For information on the Office for Diversity and Inclusion events, visit wtamu.edu/diversity or call 806-651-8482.

For information on the CSAW events, visit wtamu.edu/csaw or call 806-651-5238.

A diverse student body, faculty and staff is a key principle of the University’s long-range plan, WT 125: From the Panhandle to the World.

That plan is fueled by the historic, $125 million One West comprehensive fundraising campaign. To date, the five-year campaign — which publicly launched Sept. 23 — has raised more than $110 million.


Photo: West Texas A&M University’s Hispanic Heritage Month activities will feature Ellen Ochoa, left, and Saul Rodriguez.



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