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Hispanic Heritage Month, held from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 each year, celebrates histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. Olivet College is hosting a special event on campus Wednesday, Oct. 12 at 1:30 p.m. in the Mott Auditorium in recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month. Saturnino “Nino” Rodriguez, Ph.D., and Ruben Martinez, Ph.D., are giving a presentation entitled “The Latin Media: A Focus on Adelante Magazine” at the event, which is free and open to the public.

“I am very pleased that Olivet College is honoring Hispanic Heritage Month with this program,” said Sophomore Hannah Mellino. “It’s extremely important to recognize people from all cultural backgrounds because tensions between races are still prominent in today’s world. Efforts to fight that negativity are crucial to creating a better future. College is a time for learning and growing, so I encourage all students to attend this program and take away a better understanding of ways for people to become united.”

Rodriguez (pictured left) has served on the Lansing School District Board of Education since 2009 and has a longstanding relationship with the District, previously serving as the Deputy Superintendent from 1999-2001 and other various positions for 30 years. Rodriguez is recognized for his role as principal at Pattengill Middle School from 1984 to 1994 where he implemented guidelines to reduce violence and reformed the approach to teaching.

Rodriguez has experience as the associate director of the Julian Samora Research Institute at Michigan State University, is currently a visiting assistant professor of Spanish and Portuguese at Michigan State University and publisher of Adelante Forward Magazine. He is a member of many other community boards and dedicates his work to providing an educational foundation to children.

Martinez (pictured right) is professor of sociology and director of the Julian Samora Research Institute at Michigan State University. He has taught in higher education since 1979, worked with Latino community organizations across the nation and founded several Latino non-profit organizations focused on Latino academic success.

His research interests include neoliberalism and Latinos, diversity leadership in higher education, institutional and societal change, education and ethnic minorities, youth development, Latino labor and entrepreneurship and environmental justice issues. Dr. Martinez is the editor of the Latinos in the United States book series with the Michigan State University Press and has published many books and volumes based on his research.

“Acknowledging Hispanic Heritage Month is a great time to reflect on and recognize the various positive contributions Latino or Hispanic Americans have made in American history and today’s society, said Jason Meadows ’03, associate dean of student life. “As we aim to create a positive and inclusive campus culture, we must take time to learn about other people’s culture, heritage and their American stories.”

For more information, contact the Olivet College Multicultural Office at multicultural@olivetcollege.edu.

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