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The Antelope

The Antelope

Latinx Heritage Month: Students celebrate with live music, salsa lessons

The Hispanic Student Association shares multiple Latinx cultures with music, dancing and traditional dishes. Photo provided by Kylie Schwab / Antelope Staff

UNK’s Office of Student Diversity and Inclusion and the Hispanic Student Association hosted their annual Latinx Heritage Month Celebration last Tuesday night. Over 300 students attended to enjoy the food, fun and fiesta. 

Among the opening speakers was HSA vice president Maria Karla Garcia, who read a statement from Nebraska Governor Pete Rickets. 

“One of the biggest messages that I want to bring with this kind of event is the fact that we have a safe campus,” Garcia said. “Where we can bring a little piece of all cultures and allow each other to share what makes us special and what makes us different.”

Upon registration, students were handed T-shirts, sunglasses and beads in preparation for salsa dance lessons.

Garcia led those lessons before food was served. Dishes from various Latinx heritages included guajillo glazed wings, ginger chicken satay and chipotle maple chicken. 

The night continued as Afro-Cuban jazz orchestra Andy William and the Nebraska All Stars performed live music. 

“We chose this specific band simply because we wanted to make sure that folks here on campus understood that Latinx or Hispanic culture is not always just one culture,” said Luis Olivas, interim director of ODI. “It’s a kaleidoscope. We wanted to highlight, in this case, Caribbean countries such as Cuba, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico.”

Fourth-year student Stephanie Gonzalez appreciates the education side of the event. 

“I am a Latina woman who believes that everyone should enjoy our culture,” Gonzalez said. “I think it’s an awesome experience. Events like these showcase the whole array of what Latinx is” 

Latinx Heritage Month is from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 and celebrates the contributions of more than 60 million Hispanic Americans, Latinos and Latinas to the culture and society of the United States. HSA meets every Wednesday at 5 p.m. in the ODI office, located at the east end of the Nebraskan Student Union. Everyone is welcome to attend the special events they are hosting the rest of the month. 

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