Hispanic Heritage Month

What is it?

Each year, Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on September 15 and ending on October 15. It was enacted into law on August 17, 1988, on the approval of Public Law 100-402.

The day of September 15 is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16 and September18, respectively. Also, Columbus Day or Día de la Raza, which is October 12, falls within this 30 day period.

Hispanic Heritage Educational Opportunities in Raleigh

  • Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, and Mexican Modernism from the Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection” 
    • NC Museum of Art
    • October 26, 2019 – January 19, 2020 in East Building, Meymandi Exhibition Gallery
  • Latinx Heritage Month Keynote
    • The theme for the 2019 Latinx Heritage Month centers the current realities of being a young Latino in the U.S. We want to share our experiences, and our keynote speakers will, too.  Join us as we host some of the fellas from the mental health collective, Bloom Homie. They self describe as “homies reimagining masculinity and inspiring other men to do the same.” We are excited to invite them to campus to share their insights and talents with our community.
    • Tues, Oct 15th @ 6pm
    • Talley Student Union, Piedmont Mountains Ballroom
  • Young Author Reading: “The Voices of Our People: Nuestras Verdades”
    • Young authors at Garner Magnet High School will read from their new book The Voices of Our People: Nuestras Verdades. Following the success of their first book, this bilingual text is proudly and boldly written in the form of blackout poetry, interviews, autoethnographies, letters and poems.
    • Copies will be available on site for purchase
    • Tues, Oct 1st 7-8pm
    • DH Hill Jr Library, Fishbowl

Resources and Community Centers

  • Hispanic Family Center of Wake County
    • The Hispanic Family Center is dedicated to empowering Hispanic families to become more integrated in the community and to improve their quality of life by implementing education programs, health, job training, and referrals to facilitate access to existing community resources.
    • 2013 N Raleigh Blvd. Raleigh, NC 27604, Phone: 919-837-0094
    • http://cpfhraleigh.org/
  • Multicultural Student Affairs Office at NC State
    • The Department of Multicultural Student Affairs (MSA) researches, designs and implements unique programs that promote the pursuit of academic success, retention and graduation of students, with an emphasis on African American, Native American and Hispanic students.
    • Phone: (919) 515-3835, Email: multicultural@ncsu.edu

Suggested Readings/Research on Hispanic Heritage and Culture

  • The Price of Los Cocuyos: A Miami Childhood” by Richard Blanco

A poignant, hilarious, and inspiring memoir from the first Latino and openly gay inaugural poet, which explores his coming-of-age as the child of Cuban immigrants and his attempts to understand his place in America while grappling with his burgeoning artistic and sexual identities.

  • Can borrow from Kaitlyn Runion, Student Services A251 if interested

Underground America: Narratives of Undocumented Lives” complied and edited by Peter Orner

Millions of undocumented immigrants live in the United States under constant threat of imprisonment or deportation. They survive underground, with little protection from exploitation by human smugglers, employers, or law enforcement. Underground America presents the remarkable oral histories of men and women struggling to carve out a life in the United States.

Narrations include individuals from all walks of life and their experience as immigrants to the US

Can borrow from Kaitlyn Runion, Student Services A251 if interested

  • In the Country We Love: My Family Divided” by Diane Guerrero

Diane Guerrero, the television actress from the megahit Orange is the New Black and Jane the Virgin, was just fourteen years old on the day her parents were detained and deported while she was at school. Born in the U.S., Guerrero was able to remain in the country and continue her education, depending on the kindness of family friends who took her in and helped her build a life and a successful acting career for herself, without the support system of her family. In the Country We Love is a moving, heartbreaking story of one woman’s extraordinary resilience in the face of the nightmarish struggles of undocumented residents in this country.