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Palo Alto College celebrates Heritage Month 2017 and pays tribute to the heritages of South Texas. All events are free and open to the public. Additionally, most Heritage Month events will be live streamed and digitally archived. To view events happening now or in the past, visit the Mexican American Studies mediasite »

For more information, contact:
Lori Rodriguez
210-486-3044

Heritage Month Events


Opening Ceremony

Monday, Sept. 18 | 12:30–1:45 p.m. | Central Courtyard

  • Blessing: Grupo de Danza Azteca Xinachtli
  • Welcome:
    • Dr. Mike Flores, President of Palo Alto College
    • Dr. Lori Rodriguez - Coordinator, Center for Mexican American Studies
    • Councilwoman Rebecca Viagran, District 3
    • Dr. Carmen Tafolla, first San Antonio Poet Laureate
  • Live Music: Grupo Frackaso
  • Reception: Food & drinks will be available

Alejandrina Guzmán: A Texas Pioneer
Guest Lecture/Plática

Tuesday, Sept. 19 | 12:30–1:45 p.m. | Student Center Annex
Alejandrina Guzmán is the Student Government Association President at the University of Texas at Austin. As the first Latina student body president at UT, Guzmán will speak about the importance of inclusiveness and civic engagement in a college environment. Refreshments provided. 


Palo Alto College Welcomes Author Ana Castillo

As one of the best-known Mexican-American writers working today, Dr. Ana Castillo’s work focuses on the complexities of Xicanx identity while transcending the boundaries of politics, class, and gender. Castillo’s prose blends elements of oral history and established literary tradition with innovation and experimentation. Castillo has earned numerous awards for her writing and is best known for her novel So Far From God.

Student Talk/Plática and Q&A

Thursday, Sept. 21 | 12:30–1:45 p.m. |  Legacy Room (Ozuna 101)
Dr. Castillo will talk with students about the importance of maintaining and honoring our cultural identity through storytelling. Refreshments provided.

An Evening with Ana Castillo

Thursday, Sept. 21 | 6–8:30 p.m. |  Performing Arts Center Auditorium
Palo Alto College hosts a community talk/plática with renowned author, Dr. Ana Castillo. The event will begin with a reception at 6 p.m. and end with a book signing following the talk.


Stolen Education: Film Screening and Q&A

Tuesday, Sept. 26 | 11 a.m.–12:30 p.m. |  Student Center Annex
Stolen Education documents the untold story of Mexican-American school children in 1950’s Driscoll, Texas who experienced racial discrimination in the public school system and testified in a federal court case to end the discriminatory practice. Executive producer and co-writer Dr. Enrique Alemán will field questions after the film screening. Refreshments provided.

Student Workshop with Teatrista, Marisela Barrera

Thursday, Sept. 28 | 2–3:15 p.m. |  Performing Arts Center, Room 190
Journalist, playwright, director and actor Marisela Barrera will lead a student workshop demonstrating how theater can serve as the tool for cultural validation and community empowerment.

Tejana Trilogy: Theatrical performance written and performed by Marisela Barrera

Thursday, Sept. 28 | 4–5:30 p.m | Performing Arts Center Recital Hall, Room 190
Tejana Trilogy showcases the Donkey Lady and other characters inspired by local legend in this performance based on Marisela Barrera’s linked short story collection, “Ruby Reds, Big Birds y Burras.”

Blue Texas: The Making of a Multiracial Democratic Coalition in the Civil Rights Era
Book Reading and Author Talk/Plática

Wednesday, Oct. 4 | 12:30–1:45 p.m. |  Student Center Annex 
Blue Texas: The Making of a Multiracial Democratic Coalition in the Civil Rights Era tells the story of the decades-long struggle for democracy in Texas, when African American, Mexican American, and white labor, civil rights, and political activists came together to empower the state’s marginalized minorities and created a blueprint for ongoing organizing. Author Dr. Max Krochmal will lead a book talk and Q&A. Refreshments provided.

PAC Poetry/Rap Slam Hosted by National Slam Poets Amalia Ortiz and Anthony “The Poet” Flores

Thursday, Oct. 5 | 12:30–1:45 p.m. |  Student Center Annex
Students are invited to perform their poetry/rap alongside nationally recognized slam poets Amalia Ortiz and Anthony “The Poet” Flores. Refreshments provided.

Indigenous Peoples Day/Día de la Raza Ceremony

Monday, Oct. 9 | 11 a.m.–12:15 p.m. | Central Courtyard
The City of San Antonio designates October 12 as Indigenous People’s Day to honor the important role that indigenous heritage plays in the city’s historical and cultural makeup. The American Indians in Texas at the Spanish Colonial Missions (AIT) will lead a program focusing on honoring and maintaining Native American/indigenous cultural identity and practices.

Health and “Wela-Ness:” Reclaiming Healing Practices of our Ancestors
Discussion Panel/Plática

Thursday, Oct. 12 | 12:30–1:45 p.m. | Student Center Annex
Licensed therapist and spiritual healer, Rosa T. Yaotonalcuauhtli will lead a panel focused on holistic and indigenous/native practices of overall health and wellness. Discussion includes health of mind, body and spirit, food as medicine and starting your own healing garden. Additional panel participants include PAC AmeriCorps VISTA and Landscape and Horticultural Science Program. Refreshments Provided.


Ozuna Library Exhibits

Camino al Norte: The Journey of Don Juan de Oñate & The Legend of El Dorado Sept. 15–Oct. 13
Gold of El Dorado: Pre-Hispanic Art of Colombia Oct. 15–Nov. 10 


Heritage Month events are sponsored by the Center for Mexican American Studies, Working Writers Series Committee, Student Life, Student Activities Fee, Teatro Palo Alto, Ozuna Library