Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month

Posted on September 14, 2023

Four UNCG students walk down College Ave

“For me, Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrating my identity and just being proud in that and just kind of honoring all the sacrifices that my parents made and my ancestors made and honoring that part of my identity,” says Abigail Herrera-Leal, a student ambassador for UNC Greensboro’s Office of Intercultural Engagement (OIE).

Hispanic Heritage month is celebrated from September 15 until October 15 and highlights the history and accomplishments of Hispanic Americans. Each year, UNC Greensboro and The Office of Intercultural Engagement (OIE) hosts special events throughout the month so all students, faculty, and staff can engage in dialogues about culture and community while immersing themselves in Hispanic culture.  

National Hispanic Heritage Month celebrates the anniversaries of independence for several Latin American countries – Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua on September 15; Mexico’s declaration of independence on September 16; and Chile on September 18.  

This year, OIE presents a month of events with themes centered around all aspects of Hispanic Heritage. Follow UNCG News to learn how you can take part in the festivities. You’re going to hear from student leaders, alumni, and faculty as they educate our readers about Hispanic Heritage.  

“I find OIE to be a very safe and engaging community,” says OIE Student Ambassador Fatima Galván-Ruiz. “We have the opportunity to put out these events and do these interesting meetings and really promote what we have here on campus. For me, it’s a very powerful role because I can help other students that are like me.” 

In particular, OIE has asked their student ambassadors to participate in the creating and marketing of the Hispanic Heritage Month events. The ambassadors have been working to put together events that reflect the interests of the Hispanic and Latine students.  

Galván-Ruiz says of her experience with OIE, “It was great to have this opportunity to become an identity ambassador because not only am I embracing that, but I’m helping others students embrace that for themselves. And I find that is the most beautiful thing in the world, because for me it took a while to really connect to those roots. And once I did, I felt amazing.”

This week’s events:  

Hispanic Heritage Month Kickoff – part one 

Noche de Independencia 
6:00 – 9:00 p.m. Moran Commons Fountains 

Come celebrate and bring in Latin American Independence Day’s with us at the fountain and lean about Latin American History, traditions and interesting facts. Enjoy a live DJ and AstroDogs (Latino owned)! Limited quantities of HHM T-shirts & AstroDog Vouchers will be available.  

Hispanic Heritage Month Kickoff – part two  

Celebrating Diversity Concert 
7:30 p.m. Tew Recital Hall 

Join us for a free concert featuring music by Hispanic and Latin American composers, funded by Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Access Awards in CVPA. It’s followed by a Salsa workshop. 

“I look forward to Noche de Independencia,” says OIE Student Ambassador Juan Valle. “It’s the kickoff of Hispanic Heritage Month, and it’ll be all of our hard work come to life and see all the students engaging with everything, just embracing their culture.” 

Each week will have several events such as symposiums, talent shows, and chances to interact with the Hispanic and Latine community on campus. Join us each week for more updates and articles about Hispanic Heritage Month.  

Story by Dana Broadus, University Communications
Photography by Sean Norona, University Communications

The Papel Picado Creations Workshop lets students make their own Latin-inspired art.

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