Palomar Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month

Tarde de Familia Event is Planned for October 16

SAN MARCOS (September 24, 2015) – A colorful display in the Palomar College Library features photographs of and brief biographical statements about many Hispanic members of the College’s faculty, staff, administration and Governing Board.

The Library display is one way the college is honoring Hispanic Heritage Month, September 15 – October 15. The month-long celebration will culminate with Tarde de Familia: An Evening for Our Families which will be held at the Palomar College Industrial Technology Center on  Friday, October 16, from 6 – 8 p.m.

Laurie Hope, adjunct faculty librarian said the Library exhibit is meant to “both celebrate and inform” the Palomar College community about the “rich Hispanic background that exists in and around the college.” Hope spearheaded the Library exhibit project, which includes a map showing the extensive geographical area included in the heritage of the people represented in the display. Hope said many library staff members worked together to install the exhibit, which is growing day by day as more people are being included. The exhibit also includes fashion designs relating to Hispanic heritage that were created by students in the Advanced Visual Merchandising class taught by Rita Campo Griggs.

According to Dr. Jack Kahn, dean of Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS), members of “Grupo Maginfico,” an all-volunteer group of staff, faculty, students and administrators have been organizing events to support the Hispanic community all year long, and their flagship event, Tarde de Familia coincides with this year’s Hispanic Heritage Month. Designed to bring together students and their families with Hispanic professionals, the event also showcases the many programs and resources available to assist underrepresented students at Palomar College. Presentations are conducted entirely in Spanish and a different industry is highlighted each semester.

This semester, the Tarde de Familia event highlights the Diesel Technology program. Featured speakers are Sergio Hernandez, associate professor of diesel technology; José Jacobo, Palomar College alumnus and fleet technician for the Sysco Corporation; and special guest Paul Jacobs, California Environmental Protection Agency California Air Resources Board Chief, Mobile Source Enforcement.

The biannual Tarde de Familia event was originated in 2011 by Dr. Rodolfo Jacobo, Jr., assistant professor of Multicultural Studies. Kahn said the event was taken to new levels with the formation of “Grupo Magnifico” by bringing together representatives from several College departments and programs. These include English as a Second Language (ESL); SBS; Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM); the Teaching and Learning Center (TLC); Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP); Star Tutoring; and many others.

Tarde de Familia provides a great opportunity for students and their families to be inspired by what others have achieved, “ Kahn said. “Hispanic professionals from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds tell their stories and speak about what helped them persevere.”

With figures showing Palomar’s Hispanic student population at 39% and growing, the College is recognized as a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI) and receives funding from the federal government designated “to assist with strengthening institutional programs, facilities, and services to expand the educational opportunities for Hispanic Americans and other underrepresented populations.” (U.S. Dept. of Education website). Kahn said that Tarde de Familia is one of many events and programs that HSI funding helps make possible.

Palomar was recently ranked “as among the top three colleges and universities in the U.S. for graduating Hispanic students with Associates degrees in  ‘All Disciplines Combined’ for 2015” by Diverse: Issues In Higher Education, a newsweekly publication. This ranking will be part of a report in the  “Hispanic American Heritage” edition of the magazine, released September 24.

For more information about the Library exhibit, contact lmorrow@palomar.edu; Tarde de Familia, contact ccruz@palomar.edu.

 

CONTACTS:

Melinda Finn, Public Affairs Office, 760-744-1150, ext. 2365, mfinn@palomar.edu
Laura Gropen, Director, Public Affairs Office, 760_744-1150, ext. 2152, lgropen@palomar.edu