Ferris State University will begin [email protected] Heritage activities Tuesday, Sept. 22, as a variety of events continue into early November to celebrate the diversity that exists in the Latino community.
Center for [email protected] Studies Executive Director Jessica Cruz said that they have made an intentional name change from what had been known as Hispanic Heritage Month. [email protected] is the non-gender specific designation for what sociologist Immanuel Wallerstein described as “two different but related groups: those who come from and identify themselves with the countries of what is today called Latin America; and those within the U.S. who are descended from the first group.”
The first event is the featured panel discussion, “Hispanic and Latino: History, Race and Identity” beginning at 11 a.m. in the Founders’ Room of the University Center. Cruz said that those attending should gain “a more historical and contextual understanding about race identity in Latin America. That will involve community leaders, it’s very educational.”
Cruz also pointed to afternoon and evening events on Monday, Sept. 28 as the Interim Executive Director of Adelante U.S. Education Leadership Fund Maximo Anguiano and hip-hop artist and activist Olmeca offer the Feature Testimonios.
Office of Multicultural Student Services Assistant Director Michael Wade said that Spanish faculty in the College of Arts, Sciences and Education’ Department of Languages and Literature, the Hispanic Student Organization, Sigma Lambda Gamma, and the Music Industry Management Association are collaborating with OMSS and CLS on the [email protected] Heritage celebration schedule. Wade encourages Ferris students of all backgrounds and the university community to take part.
“Even if they knew a little about the [email protected] experience, maybe this will enhance that and provide a different perspective about a social justice issue, a current trend or learning a dance move or two, or exposure to some different cuisine,” he said. “We hope to have those ‘A-ha’ moments and learning opportunities throughout each of these events.”
Ferris has been offering an annual schedule of events celebrating the Latino culture since the early 1990s. National Hispanic Heritage Month begins Tuesday, Sept. 15 and continues to Thursday, Oct. 15.