Center for Multicultural Initiatives (CMI)

North Foundation Hall, Room 104
318 Meadow Brook Road
Rochester, MI 48309
(location map)
(248) 370-4404

Monday-Friday: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m

Image of Bryan Munoz, looking at camera with hispanic heritage posters around him.

Hispanic Heritage Month

About HHM

National Hispanic Heritage Month is a national recognition of the culture, contributions and heritage of Hispanic Americans whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. Each year, Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15.

The day of September 15 is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16 and September 18, respectively.

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.

It is a long-standing tradition at Oakland University to recognize National Hispanic Heritage Month during the month of September to celebrate the history, politics and culture of Hispanic people, locally and globally.

2020 Hispanic Heritage Month Events

Wednesday, September 16 | Miércoles 16 de Septiembre

Effects of COVID-19 on Migrant Communities
Virtual (Register Here) | 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Moderator: Adolfo Campoy-Cubillo, Department of Modern Language

  1. Mariana C. Martínez, Chief of Staff, Office of Council Member Raquel Castañeda-López, Detroit City Council
  2. Representatives from African Bureau of Immigration and Social Affairs (ABISA)
  4. The Detroit Hispanic Development Corporation (DHDC)

Migrant communities have been disproportionately affected by Covid-19. Our panelist will be talking about the Detroit City Council's Immigration Task Force initiative to provide financial assistance to undocumented workers during the present pandemic. 

Thursday, September 17 | Jueves 17 de Septiembre

Latinx Scholar on Afro-Latinx and Black Lives Matter
Virtual | 12 – 1:30 p.m.
Event recording

Moderator: Adolfo Campoy-Cubillo, Department of Modern Languages

  1. Dr. Cecilia Suarez, Assistant Professor in Leadership,Intercultural Communication and Faculty Affiliate for the Center for Latin American Studies and Education Policy Research at University of Florida
  2. Dr. Leonard Savala, Director Office of Multicultural Student Engagement at Wayne State University  
  3. Dr. Ethriam Brammer, Assistant Dean, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Implementation Lead at University of Michigan Ann Arbor Rackham Graduate School

In observance of Hispanic/Latinx Heritage Month, Oakland University is hosting a Latinx Scholar Panel to share the experience of Afro-Latinx students and the intersection of the Black Lives Matter movement and/in the Latinx Community. Questions can be submitted before and during the event anonymously or with your name by filling out this form.

Thursday, October 1 | Jueves 1 de Octubre

Hispanic Heritage Month Book Club
Virtual | 12 - 1 p.m.
Meeting ID
Join by phone
(US) +1 513-818-1500 PIN: 934 602 614#

Book: Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Join us as we celebrate Hispanic and Latinx authors! Though we will be highlighting the featured work of Silvia Moreno-Garcia, reading the book is not required to attend this event. We will provide an opportunity for folks to share their favorite Hispanic and Latinx authors and/or works.

Wednesday, October 7 | Miércoles 7 de Octubre

OUSC Hispanic Heritage Month Concerns Forum
Virtual | 4 – 5:30 p.m.
Meeting ID
Join by phone
(US) +1 260-232-0219 (PIN: 437416243)

Hear about the Hispanic/Latinx student experience at OU and information about support services that exist at OU. All OU students, faculty, and staff are welcome to attend. Students are encouraged to submit questions via this google form.

Thursday, October 15 | Jueves 15 de Octubre

Hispanics Writing in Our Own Voice: American Dirt and Palm Trees in the Snow
Virtual | 1 – 3 p.m.
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 958 0214 7119
Passcode: 988463

Speaker: Dr. Michael Ugarte, Professor emeritus at the University of Missouri–Columbia and a Guggenheim Fellowship recipient

A thought provoking lecture about the construction of Hispanic identity in terms of race, sexuality, gender, and social class in “American Dirt” by Jeanine Cummins and “Palm Trees in the Snow” by Luz Gabas.

Hispanic Heritage Month on Social Media

Visit @ou_cmi on Tuesdays throughout the month for authentic cooking tutorials and recipes on Instagram
Follow @ouscofficial for the HHM Instagram post on Mondays throughout the month

Community Events

Thursday, September 24 | Jueves 24 de Septiembre

Getting Ready for College: Financial Aid, Admissions, and Dual Enrollment
Virtual (Register Here) | 6 – 7:30 p.m.
Zoom link and password will be emailed to you prior the event

Presenters: Dr. Carrie A. Gilchrist, Ruth Paula, and Dr. Cecilia Saenz-Roby

Part I: Informative Workshop for Hispanic High School Students and Parents (Bilingual presentation)

Thursday, October 8 | Jueves 8 de Octubre

Getting Ready for College: Programs and Experiences
Virtual (Register Here) | 6 - 7:30 p.m.
Zoom link and password will be emailed to you prior the event

Presenters: OU Spanish students and Dr. Cecilia Saenz-Roby

Part II: Informative Workshop for Hispanic High School Students and Parents (Bilingual presentation)


2020 Hispanic Heritage Month Committee

  • Adolfo Campoy-Cubillo, Modern Languages & Literature, Spanish, Assistant Professor
  • Aura Cazares, Assistant Dean of Students
  • John Corso-Esquivel, Director, Center for Public Humanities, Associate Professor of Art History
  • Nicole Lucio, Center for Multicultural Initiatives, Assistant Director
  • Jean Ann Miller, Center for Student Activities, Director
  • PJ Roberts, Oakland University Student Congress, Diversity and Inclusion Director
  • Cecilia Saenz-Roby, Modern Languages and Literature, Spanish, Associate Professor
  • Grace Wojcik, Gender and Sexuality Center, Coordinator

2020 Hispanic Heritage Month Sponsors

  • Center for Multicultural Initiatives

  • Oakland University Student Congress

  • Office for Student Involvement

  • Hispanic American Leadership Organization

  • Oakland University Student Program Board

  • Spanish Club

  • Sigma Delta Pi

  • Department of Modern Languages and Literatures

  • Gender and Sexuality Center

  • University Housing
  • Quicken Loans