LCAE prepares for largest Graduación Latinx

More than 250 students will participate in cultural celebration

The Graduación Latinx will host more than 250 graduating Latinx students and their friends and family.

Latinx Center for Academic Excellence presents the Graduación Latinx Friday, May 17 at 6 p.m. at the Lumberjack Arena in the Kinesiology & Athletics Building.

I feel overwhelmed, proud, and happy all at the same time.”

Fernando Flores

Graduación Latinx started in the early 90s and has been gaining popularity since then. Last year, 230 students signed up to attend the ceremony.

“It’s a significant year because it’s the biggest number of students that we’ve had so far, meaning more and more Latinx students are graduating HSU,” Emily Fajardo, LCAE event planner said. “Latinx grad allows students and their families and friends participate in a more personal, intimate celebration with students who share similar cultures, traditions and backgrounds.”

The increase of Latinx graduates coincides with the trend that more and more Hispanic students are graduating HSU according to data released by The California State University of Institutional Research and Analysis.

The organization reports that there is an increase in four-year graduation rates for Hispanic/Latino graduates from 13% in 2017 to 17% in 2018.

Emotional Celebration
Excitement for graduation was evident in a room filled with students preparing their graduation caps at an LCAE sponsored event on May 3.

Melissa Pallares, a business major, said she is “excited to be a first gen to graduate” and to share that moment with her close family.

Another student, Justin Canara is graduating with a masters degree in business, is excited to be “seeing the accumulation of everyone’s hard work pay off,” and said that his extended family is coming from Pittsburg.

However, sometimes cultural graduations might be overlooked, but fortunately for graduate, Fernando Flores who is majoring in Environmental Resources Engineering, who was not aware of Graduación Latinx at first but decided to sign up and is ready to celebrate.

“Didn’t hear about it until a year ago,” he said. “I was inspired to go because I saw others doing it.”

Flores added that graduation is stirring a surge of emotions, and that many other graduates might be feeling it too.

“I feel overwhelmed, proud, and happy all at the same time,” Flores said.

Both Pallares and Canera shared a similar fear about leaving school and said that it will be their first time being out of school since preschool or kindergarten.

“I’m grateful to the LCAE for bringing this unique culture to a graduation ceremony,” Flores said. “Showing the commonality of Hispanic speaking communities and adding to the college graduating experience.”

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