OMA Celebrates Latinx Heritage Month

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Latinx heritage month runs from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15. (Courtesy of Fordham Latinx Heritage Instagram)

Patricia Whyte, Staff Writer

Sept. 15 marks the official start of National Latinx Heritage Month, a period recognizing Latinx Americans’ contributions and their influence on U.S. history and culture. The Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) will continue to host Latinx centered events in honor of this month through Oct. 15. 

The Latinx Heritage Committee at Fordham is an extension of OMA that creates events for both campuses to bring cultural awareness of the Latinx community at Fordham, according to their mission statement. 

Jennifer Rivero, FCRH ’21, is the cultural programming coordinator for Latinx Heritage Month at Rose Hill. She hopes to create fun and interactive events for the Fordham community to uplift the Latinx community’s voices. 

Because the month starts so early in the semester, the committee plans and coordinates everything over the summer. 

“Programming was difficult this year because of uncertainties like the university reopening and how our budget would be affected,” Rivero said. 

The committee has put on hybrid events this month, with in-person and online elements. On Sept. 17, the committee hosted a dance class called “Noche de Baile,” which had in-person instruction and a live Zoom link for those who wanted to participate virtually. 

Graduate student Lilibeth Ramos Flores advises the Latinx Heritage Committee. Flores is a graduate intern for the Office of Multicultural Affairs and oversees the committee for the entire academic year. 

“The pandemic certainly changed a lot of things,” Flores said. “Moving to mainly virtual events was difficult for the committee and coordinators to adjust to.”

Six students lead the committee for both the Rose Hill and Lincoln Center campuses. This was the first year the committee had fully functional committees on both campuses, according to Flores. 

“That in itself has made Latinx Heritage Month much more fun and engaging this year,” Flores said. 

This year, other events that have taken place this year include Fiesta de Banderas, an opening ceremony to the month on Sept. 15 with flags and an educational talk about the Latinx flags’ history. The committee also hosted a trivia night and movie night, which were hybrid events that included both virtual and in-person students. 

“Turnout has been as good as could be expected,” Flores said. “With the virtual and hybrid components sometimes posing as an obstacle, there has been feedback that events have been inclusive and accessible to people across campuses.” 

Rivero said the events have been a success among students, and the feedback they have received on their Instagram (@fordham_latinx) has been very positive. 

“Everyone has been loving the events at both Rose Hill and Lincoln Center, and we get lots of messages from Latinx students who are happy about the representation and are excited for more ways to connect with their culture at Fordham,” Rivero said. 

Upcoming events for Latinx Heritage Month include “No Soy Illegal: An Immigration Dialogue,” set to take place on Oct. 14, and an Afro-Latinidad panel event happening on Tuesday night in collaboration with El Grito De Lares, Fordham’s Socio-Cultural Latinx Club and ASILI, Fordham’s Black Student Alliance. 

“We are already very excited to be planning more events for the rest of the year,” Rivero said. “We hope to continue celebrating Latinx heritage and create more conversations.”

Next on the docket for the Latinx Heritage Committee will be events surrounding Dia de los Muertos, a Mexican holiday in October to remember the dead. Additionally, the committee will be exploring ways to collaborate with the Latinx clubs on both campuses.

“The idea is to continue celebrating Latinx identity throughout the year to enforce visibility of the cultures that exist within the community,” Flores said.