Latisha Dominguez, graduate assistant Office of Multicultural Affairs, 308.865.8127
Thirty students were chosen by the Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) at the University of Nebraska at Kearney to attend the United States Hispanic Leadership Institute (USHLI) Conference held recently in Chicago.
At the USHLI conference, the students had an opportunity to participate in interactive development workshops and networking opportunities, as well as learn from nationally prominent speakers.
“USHLI’s mission is to fulfill the promises and principles of democracy by promoting education, research and leadership development, and empowering Latinos and similarly disenfranchised groups by maximizing their civic awareness, engagement and participation,” said Latisha Dominguez, UNK graduate assistant in OMA. “At this particular conference, it was inspiring to see the students provided with workshops in which they had the opportunity to learn from and relate to. They were able to recognize what it takes and what is needed to become as successful as the individuals they were surrounded by at the conference.”
According to Dominguez, students had the chance to listen to prominent speakers within the Latino community, such as Dolores Huerta, labor leader and civil rights activist who, along with Cesar Chavez, co-founded the National Farmworkers Association.
In the past, students were chosen to attend the USHLI conference when they were seen as leaders already serving on the board for the Nebraska Cultural Unity Conference (NCUC), which is held at UNK annually.
“USHLI serves as a way for those students on the NCUC planning committee to learn, engage and network with others in order to bring back ideas and contact information that could benefit the next year’s NCUC Conference,” Dominguez said. “It also helped them develop leadership skills and allowed them the opportunity to meet and learn from students all around the United States.”
Now, in addition to those serving as chair members for NCUC, OMA has opened up the opportunity for students to be a part of the USHLI conference if they’ve shown commitment to being a leader in OMA student organizations and the Collegiate Leadership and Development Program (CLDP) at UNK.
“We also have many students who showed leadership within their OMA organizations, and they were asked to attend the conference for the same purpose as the rest: to enhance their knowledge and engage their minds,” Dominguez said. “We hope that all the students will come back to UNK pumped and ready to do more for this campus.”
According to Dominguez, the primary objective of CLDP is to cultivate the next generation of diversity students through activism on campus and in the community. This program provides an environment for diverse students to begin to understand how the university’s organizational structure functions, and how they, as students, can play a more effective role in formulating, implementing and influencing university policy.
“For several years, the Office of Multicultural Affairs has had the opportunity to take students to the annual USHLI Conference,” Dominguez said. “As a student who has attended USHLI in the past, I think that it is important for all these students to attend USHLI, broaden their perspectives and become more aware of the national opportunities afforded to them.”
The USHLI conference attracts student leaders from more than 40 states and 1,000 affiliated groups and organizations to celebrate Hispanic heritage, and is the largest cross-generational Hispanic conference in the nation, attracting high school and college students, young and mid-career professionals and public officials representing all levels of government.
The students and graduate assistants who attended the USHLI conference are listed below, alphabetically by hometown:
Columbus – Jordan Loschen
Cozad – Cesar Duran
Cozad – Noemi Bravo
Grand Island – Esperanza Wolseben
Grand Island – Ingrid Rodriguez
Grand Island – Issis Annel Garcia
Grand Island – Lizet Erives
Grand Island – Miguel Baeza-Aguilera
Grand Island – Reyna Raymundo
Grand Island – Ruth Stephany Tejada
Grand Island – Stephanie Sotelo
Gibbon – Jaime Lopez
Gibbon – Moises Castillo
Imperial – Jonathon Hess
Kearney – Tyson Radcliffe
Lexington – Andy Becerra
Lexington – Bryan Carlos Ramallo
Lexington – Cecilia Perales
Lexington – Julisa Reyes
Lexington – Diana Ramirez
Lexington – Esvin Gomez
Lexington – Janeth Barocio
Lexington – Lorena Ortega
Lexington – Paola Carillo
Scottsbluff – Adrianna Tarin
Scottsbluff – Rosy Angelica Villa
Omaha – Michael Perez Chavez
Wood River – Martin Rodriguez
Texas -Lubbock – Latisha R. Dominguez
Lubbock – Xavier Luis Salas