The Spanish Heritage Language (SHL) Program hosted a virtual event in late April aimed to support Latinx students who plan to attend graduate school.
The event called Rompiendo Fronteras: The Latinx Experience in Grad School featured a series of guests, which included both faculty members and current graduate students, according to Kelley Leon Howarth, the Coordinator of the SHL Program.
The event was made up of seven different speakers. Three university of Oregon faculty members discussed their academic and personal journeys to their positions at the UO on the first panel: Dr. José Cortez, Dr. Audrey Lucero, and Dr. María Escallón. Additionally, four current university of Oregon graduate students presented their experiences on the second panel: Polet Campos-Melchor, Jesús Narvaez Santiago, Natalia Orozco, and Bryan Rojas Araus. The panelists shared their personal experiences being Latinx in grad school and answered questions from the audience. “The potential impact of their shared advice and personal stories is endless,” said Dr. Sergio Loza, Director of the SHL Program.
Howarth was surprised at how many students choose to attend the online event, saying that more than 30 students were present. Howarth herself briefly presented programs and resources at the University of Oregon that help prepare students for graduate school. Moreover, she says the event and future events will center around Latinx student experiences that are meaningful and provide inspiration and mentorship for academic and personal success.
To sum up the success of the event, Howarth said, “the extremely positive feedback we received from our undergraduate students, as well as their many questions during the event, is evidence of the guests' invaluable contribution.”