Choate Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month

National Hispanic Heritage Month, which lasted from September 15 to October 15, ended this past Sunday. The purpose of Hispanic Heritage Month is to recognize the contributions of Hispanic and Latinx Americans to the group’s heritage and culture. HLF, Choate’s Hispanic Latinx Forum, worked with the school to make this Hispanic Heritage month memorable.

According to the president of HLF, Richard Lopez ’18, HLF was working to “emphasize the influence that Hispanic and Latinx people have had on U.S society by creating posters and putting them up around campus.”

Lopez continued, “We have held several meetings for students to come and discuss some of the obstacles that Hispanic and Latinx people may have faced while living in the United States.” Not only did HLF focus on the difficulties that Hispanic and Latinx people have confronted in American society, they also discussed what they have experienced at Choate. Lopez continued, “Students shared stories that they have had in the past on the Choate campus and at home. At the end, we reflected upon these stories and discussed how these problems should be addressed.”

Not only did HLF raise awareness of some of the problems that Hispanic and Latinx Americans face through discussion, they also hosted events for students to learn about the culture. One of the ways HLF shared their culture was through cuisine by working with SAGE to host an event in the Dining Hall. Vice president of HLF, Mirialie Dejesus ’18 expanded on this event, “Last year was the first year that the community dinner was held in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month because HLF pushed for a Hispanic themed dinner. This year, the school put less of the responsibility on the student leaders of HLF and took it upon themselves to organize the event.”

Not only did HLF work with SAGE to create a community dinner, they also worked towards raising awareness by, according to Dejesus, “doing an empanada cooking class at the beginning of the year, hosting a SAC dance with merengue, salsa, and bachata music playing in addition to music one would hear on the radio.”

Lopez concluded, “I hope that Choate comes to truly appreciate and realize the importance of Hispanic and Latinx people in society. By allowing students to see how much the Hispanic community has had on society and the world, the Choate community will hopefully build a new respect for Hispanics. These new perspectives will hopefully combat the negative image that the Hispanic and Latinx community has been given through the media.” Dejesus added, “Hopefully, Hispanic Heritage Month becomes more widely known across campus to celebrate all Hispanic and Latin American cultures and countries.”

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