Hispanic Heritage Month

September 15 - October 15


Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the histories, cultures, and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America.

The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on September 15 and ending on October 15. It was enacted into law on August 17, 1988, with the approval of Public Law 100-402.

The day of September 15 is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for the Latin American countries of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16 and September 18, respectively. Also, Columbus Day or Día de la Raza, which is October 12, falls within this 30-day period.

Reference: National Hispanic Heritage Month



“The Shell in the Clouds / El Caparazón en las Nubes" Exhibit by Pável Acevedo

Date: September 5 - October 6, 2023
Time: Gallery Hours
Location: Fine Arts Building (B28), Amy H. Carberry Fine Arts Gallery

The Amy H. Carberry Fine Arts Gallery at Springfield Technical Community College proudly launches the fall semester with a Hispanic Heritage Month exhibition entitled, The Shell in the Clouds / El Caparazón en las Nubes, by Oaxacan-born artist Pável Acevedo, on view from September 5 through October 6, 2023.

Breaking Barriers: The Inspirational Journey of Olga E. Custodio in Aviation

Date: Wednesday, October 11
Time: 12:15 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Location: Scibelli Hall (B2), Auditorium

In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, Olga Custodio, a trailblazing Latina who shattered gender stereotypes and achieved numerous milestones in the aviation industry, will give a presentation titled “Breaking Barriers: The Inspirational Journey of Olga E. Custodio in Aviation.” From becoming the first Latina to complete U.S. Air Force Undergraduate Pilot Training to her distinguished career as a military pilot and commercial airline captain, Olga's story exemplifies the power of perseverance and determination. Through her pioneering efforts, she has not only realized her own dreams but also become a mentor and advocate, inspiring the next generation, especially women, to pursue their aspirations in aviation and beyond.

Vamos a Bailar: Roshay, Bachata Dance Instructor

Date: Friday, October 13, 2023
Time: 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Location: Scibelli Hall (B2), 7thFloor

Immerse yourself in the rhythmic work of bachata, whether you’re a beginner or seeking to polish your skills. Our instructor, Roshay, will expertly guide you through the steps. Bring your enthusiasm and prepare to elevate your dance moves!

Movies That Matter: “Encanto”

12:15 p.m.
Ira H. Rubenzahl Student Learning Commons (B19), Forum

Magdalena Gomez 

12:15 p.m.
Scibelli Hall (B2), 7th floor

This event is co-sponsored by OMA & HAHE

Ms. Gómez is an award-winning performance poet, playwright, performer, teaching artist and highly sought after keynote speaker and workshop facilitator. She is the co-founder and artistic director of Teatro V!da, www.teatrovida.com  the first Latin@ theater in Springfield, Massachusetts, and founder of the Ferocious Women’s Group bringing to public view voices of women and girls through writing and performance. For ten years, Ms. Gómez performed nationally as a jazz poet with the late baritone saxophonist, Fred Ho. Ms. Gomez is also a New England Public Radio commentator, national speaker and columnist with the Point of View Newspaper. She is the co-editor of Bullying: Replies, Rebuttals, Confessions and Catharsis, the first multicultural, intergenerational and multi- genre anthology on bullying.

Dr. Raul Fernandez

11:15 a.m.
Building 2 Scibelli Hall Theater

Dr. Raul Fernandez has more than a decade of diverse experience in higher education. He is a well-recognized leader and accomplished speaker on issues of diversity and inclusion, with hundreds of faculty, staff and students at numerous campuses and conferences having attended his workshops. Raul’s signature workshop, Blind Spots, challenges participants to examine their background, beliefs and biases while identifying areas where they can do the work and grow. He’s facilitated versions of Blind Spots for deans, faculty and administrators, high school teachers and tutors, resident assistants, campus activities boards, and orientation leaders. Raul previously taught courses in Speech and Communication at Miami-Dade College, and has taught a section of BU’s First Year Experience course for the last five years. He also co-developed the curriculum and taught a Boston University course on Identity, Inclusion & Social Action. The course helps students to examine systems of oppression and identify opportunities to work toward social justice. In addition to teaching his own section, Raul developed the module on Race, Ethnicity and National Origin, with a focus on the causes and impact of implicit bias

Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration & Latin Food Tasting

Scibelli Hall (B2) Rms 109 & 110
12:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m.

This is a free event and open to all with delicious grab-and-go food and live music from Jose Gonzalez and Banda Criolla.

This event is in collaboration with the STCC Hispanic Association of Higher Education (HAHE).

We The Women: Shirley Arriaga

12:15 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Ira H. Rubenzahl Student Learning Commons (B19), Forum

Shirley Arriaga, an STCC graduate and U.S. Air Force veteran, will speak as part of the We the Women series. Arriaga recently won the Democratic nomination for state representative (8th Hampden District). She is a mother and educator at Chicopee High School.

Heart of a Man (Podcast): “Hearts & Minds Pt. II, A Dialogue on Mentorship”

2:00 p.m.
Virtual (available on Heart of a Man webpage & Libguide)

*This event is co-sponsored by OMA, OVW, and MILE

MILE/LEAD Event: Belonging Workshop w/ Denise Soler Cox


Denise Soler-Cox: Queen of Belonging + Award-Winning Filmmaker, Top 100 Podcaster + Keynote Speaker Transforming how we think about culture, identity, and what it means to belong.

External Local Events

Film - In the Heights

In a collaboration with Bay Path University, STCC presented a Latinx-themed film titled “In the Heights” on Sept. 22. The outdoor movie, was held at Bay Path in Longmeadow. Transportation from STCC to Bay Path and back was provided. This event was part of Hispanic/Latinx History Month at STCC.

María Luisa Arroyo: Identity and Belonging

In celebration of Hispanic/Latinx History Month poet, author, and professor of writing María Luisa Arroyo presented an informal discussion about identity and belonging. Arroyo currently teaches at Bay Path University.

Watch María Luisa Arroyo: Identity and Belonging on YouTube

Con Todo Corazón: Perspectives on Healthy Masculinity

The kick-off of the Heart of a Man Virtual Engaging Men Series entitled, Con Todo Corazón: Perspectives on Healthy Masculinity. This event was held in recognition of both Hispanic Heritage Month and Domestic Violence Awareness Month and features STCC's very own Miguel Velez, Gustavo Acosta, José Lopez-Figueroa, Miguel Maria, and James Lightfoot, as well as Luis Santiago from the YWCA of Western Massachusetts, and Hugo Balta, owner and publisher of Latino Network News.

Watch Con Todo Corazón: Perspectives on Healthy Masculinity on YouTube

Carberry Conversations: Jorge Costa

Carberry Conversations is a series of virtual talks connecting working artists and photographers to the Greater Springfield community. Topics include origin stories, the impact of current events on artistic process, and the function of art and photography during times of crisis. In this event, Sondra speaks with artist and STCC adjunct professor Jorge Costa. Part of Hispanic/Latinx History Month events at STCC.

Watch Carberry Conversations: Jorge Costa on YouTube

We The Women Series: Dr. Estela R. López

Celebrating Hispanic/Latinx History Month, STCC welcomed Dr. Estela R. López. We the Women discusses women’s careers, accomplishments, and the barriers they face. All in different capacities and from different backgrounds, these women share a passion for creating opportunities for STCC students.

Watch We the Women Series; Dr. Estela R. López on YouTube