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Hispanic Heritage History Month

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A&GS Celebrates: Hispanic Heritage

it is an image of the earth made up of different words, celebrating the Hispanic Heritage.

National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated from September 15 to October 15. President Johnson initiated the official national observation in 1968 with a single week, and President Reagan expanded the period to 30 days, an observance put in law on August 17, 1988. Since then, September 15–October 15 has been a time to celebrate Hispanic Americans, their culture, history, accomplishments, and gifts. 

Rather than coinciding with a specific month itself, National Hispanic Heritage Month’s timespan was chosen to reflect and encompass the independence days of various Latin American Countries, including Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica (Sept. 15); Mexico (Sept. 16); Chile (Sept. 18); and Belize (Sept. 21) (Pew Research Center). This is a time to celebrate a wide range of cultures, ethnicities, and identities, including individuals who trace their heritage back to the countries of Spain, Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean (US Census Bureau). 

For more information and to celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month, see the following links: 

  • This article on the name of the month itself from NPR. 

  • This list from the Smithsonian Learning Lab, and the myriad links within. 

  • These in-state and local events

To celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, OU and A&GS have assembled…

 

We hope you will join us in celebrating this month, the rich heritage of so many people, and the contributions of Hispanic and Latino peoples in A&GS and beyond.

 


 

University-Wide Events

Celebrating Hispanic Heritage month September 15 through October 15.  OU Latno Programs and Services and OU HASA (hispanic american student association)
Click the graphic above for more information about Hispanic Heritage Month!

OU's Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is celebrating Black History Month.  See below for a list of activites and check out their calendar for even more events!

OU's DEI Calendar

 


 

A&GS Hispanic and LatinX American Stories

Elisa Murillo, PhD Student, SoM
  • What or who encouraged you to enter the field of meteorology, climate science, geography, environmental sustainability, and/ or related disciplines?
    • Dr. Jason Anderson, a Black professor from my high school, who had his B.S. in Meteorology and a PhD in Genetics, was my first teacher who made me feel like I could be, or already was, a part of the Meteorology community.
  • Describe a barrier or challenge you have faced and have had to overcome in your field as a result of being Hispanic and/or LatinX.
    • The biggest ongoing challenge for me is having to explain to people why me being a Latina is such a large part of my identity and why it should also matter to those who care about me.
  • In one sentence, describe your role in our college or your discipline.
    • I believe that my role in both spaces is to question/challenge the status quo and encourage all those around me to do so as well.
  • Why is diversity, equity, and inclusion important to you?
    • JEDI efforts have validated so many of my experiences throughout my academic career and have taken loads of pressure off me personally, since I typically have to constantly convince colleagues/students that things are actually different for me or that people actually treat me differently.
Aiyesga Ghani, Graduate Teaching Assistant - DGES
  • What or who encouraged you to enter the field of meteorology, climate science, geography, environmental sustainability, and/ or related disciplines?
    • Laurel Smith
  • In one sentence, describe your role in our college or your discipline.
    • Introducing archipelagic and trans-oceanic ontologies into scientific disciplines and methods.
  • Describe a barrier or challenge you have faced and have had to overcome in your field as a result of being Hispanic and/or LatinX.
    • Living in the continental US and working within institutions where there is not a lot of Latinx staff.
  • Describe a career aspiration you have for yourself.
    • Work/Research at the National Astronomy & Ionosphere Center (Arecibo Observatory) in Puerto Rico.
  • If you could go back to visit your younger self, what advice would you give you?
    • Don't try to assimilate.
Mathew Varela, Student Staff, SoM & OK Mesonet
  • What or who encouraged you to enter the field of meteorology, climate science, geography, environmental sustainability, and/ or related disciplines?
    • Austin Memorial Day 2015 Floods
  • Describe a career aspiration you have for yourself.
    • As a member of the Hispanic community, I have seen the importance and necessity of conveying accurate and important information to underserved groups. These communities have historically been hindered by their limited access to weather information. I hope to educate all people about weather safety, climate change, and the impact that natural disasters have on humans once I become a degreed meteorologist.
  • If you could go back to visit your younger self, what advice would you give you?
    • I would tell myself to always try new opportunities. I am just now starting to understand how important this is. Now, I make sure to reach out to peers and professors at any chance that I can get so that I can make valuable connections for the future.
  • Why is diversity, equity, and inclusion important to you?
    • DEI is important to me because I want to see different viewpoints and backgrounds represented in our field of study. Different perspectives allow us to better collaborate with our peers. I hope that we can continue to work towards a goal of having a more diverse college by recruiting in schools with minority populations and continuing to host events at the National Weather Center geared towards middle and high school-aged students.

Rosa Mwakyoma, Student, SoM
  • What or who encouraged you to enter the field of meteorology, climate science, geography, environmental sustainability, and/ or related disciplines?
    • Reed Timmer
  • Describe a barrier or challenge you have faced and have had to overcome in your field as a result of being Hispanic and/or LatinX.
    • Where I grew up there wasn't much representation in the Meteorology field so I did not think about becoming a meteorologist straight out of high school. Now 15 years later I am confident in my dreams.
  • In one sentence, describe your role in our college or your discipline.
    • As a student, I am committed to learning as much as possible about the field to be apart of a research team in the future.
  • Why is diversity, equity, and inclusion important to you?
    • All populations should have the opportunity to be represented. It can create better understanding of other cultures/groups.
  • How have your experiences as an Hispanic and/or LatinX shaped your career?
    • I have had opportunities to grow my customer service skills being bilingual. I often got hired quickly because of that skill. That experience has allowed me to grow confidence to pursue whatever I set my eyes on.
Juliana Mejia, Student, SoM
  • Name a person who has inspired you in the field of meteorology, climate science, geography, environmental sustainability, and/ or other related disciplines.
    • Ginger Zee & Joesph Trujillo
  • Describe a barrier or challenge you have faced and have had to overcome in your field as a result of being Hispanic and/or LatinX.
    • An indirect challenge I've faced is wanting to pursue & practice bilingual skills as a broadcast meteorologist, but there have been so far & few people that have been able to help mentor & guide me (and others) in doing this. Without structured, consistent support/assistance, I've found it very difficult to practice on my own & have confidence that I'm even communicating meteorological information correctly.
  • In one sentence, describe your role in our college or your discipline.
    • I'm a senior in the School of Meteorology with the intention of becoming a broadcast meteorologist.
  • Why is diversity, equity, and inclusion important to you?
    • It's disheartening to still see a major lack of diversity not only in the program, but the field of atmospheric science overall. I want underrepresented people & children to have the same opportunities to be introduced to sciences and to have more educational opportunities that will help them achieve higher education/careers in STEM.
  • How have your experiences as an Hispanic and/or LatinX shaped your career?
    • So far, being Hispanic & being familiar with Spanish has helped strike important and opportunistic conversations. It has also led me to now dedicate my Capstone research to the topic of "Communicating Extreme Weather to Spanish-speaking Communities".
  • If you could go back to visit your younger self, what advice would you give you?
    • Being that English, not Spanish, is my first language I'd tell my younger self to practice, practice, practice speaking Spanish! As much as possible!

 


 

Resources

A&GS CELEBRATES HISPANIC HERITAGE Sept. 15 - Oct. 15. there are various links to Read, watch, and listen to recommended resources from the college of A&GS
Image: A&GS Hispanic Heritage Resources (PDF)

 


 

A&GS Social Media Accounts