This fall semester, Pacific University will see the fruition of the Hispanic Heritage Student Association (HHSA) after four years of development. HHSA plans on organizing more events and community outreach for students
of Hispanic heritage and their families this year.
The new executive members for this year include Fernando Aguilar as president, Karla Suarez as vice president, Luke Espinoza as Secretary and Joaquin Yrizarris as Treasurer. This year, HHSA also plans on addressing a few problems from last year.
“There were a lot of people at the meetings,” Suarez said. “We were too generalized.”
The group plans on having more structure and focus this year to provide more events for the students and families. For the first general meeting on Sept. 26, the HHSA will plan a dinner for the Hispanic students and their families similar to the pig roast held last year.
HHSA already attended the DACA protest in Forest Grove on Thursday, Sept. 7 and also hopes to have an event for Dia de los Muertos in October.
“We are now in phase two,” adviser Victor Rodriguez said. “Phase one was to build a community to build off from which we started last year.”
The program has been in development for four years and originally started as a Spanish class for native speakers taught by Professor Mariana Valenzuela. However, students and faculty wanted more according to Rodriguez.
Originally, Valenzuela, Professor of Psychology, Alyson Burns-Glover and the former diversity director were instrumental in the formation of the association. An increase in the Hispanic student population along with a desire to supply a more family oriented community for students motivated them to create the group.
For those interested in HHSA. The first general meeting is planned for Tuesday, Sept. 26 at 4:30 p.m. in the CLIC.