UK honors Latin heritage

By Jennifer Abreu

UK celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month with events in September and October.

The university has already hosted three events — Talk on Maya Languages, Music from Latin America and Latino Arts Blend — last week.

On Thursday, students and faculty will have a meet and greet at the Latino/Hispanic Student and Faculty Mixer at the MLK Center in the Student Center from 5 to 7 p.m.

“Sin Pais (Without Country)” Documentary and Dialogue, portraying the life and struggle of one immigrant family, will be shown at the Consolidated Baptist Church on Friday at 6 p.m.

While most events take place at UK and focus on campus population, “Sin Pais” aims at a larger crowd, attempting to reach the entire community with a family-friendly event.

Popcorn and drinks will be served, and there will be sitters to watch the kids whose parents want to attend.

Marisol Valles, coordinator at the Kentucky HEP Initiative Program, said the showing is more than a documentary.

“(‘Sin Pais’) shows la trayectoria, the journey of the people who come to this country for a better life,” she said.

The HEP Initiative Program offers GED classes for seasonal and migrant workers and their qualifying family members in 10 Kentucky counties.

Valles said the idea of showing “Sin Pais” came from co-worker Vincent Rivera and the efforts of the HEP Initiative program to link their students to culture.

“It’s an event for the whole family, and we are always trying to have cultural activities for our students to be involved in,” she said. “And this is something they can relate to.”

Valles believes everyone will be able to learn something from the documentary.

“It’s a chance for everyone to understand the sacrifices immigrants make for their families, even the second generations, even those who see it from a different perspective,” she said.

The celebration will continue Oct. 4 with the Hispanic and Latino Heritage Campus Celebration in the Student Center Small Ballroom from 6 to 9 p.m.

Food and prizes will be offered to those in attendance.

On Oct. 12, professor David Cook-Martin from Grinnell College and professor Christian Zlolniski from the University of Texas will be discussing immigration politics at the Politics of Latin American Migration in the Student Center room 231 from 2 to 3 p.m.