By Sarah Pinkerton | Staff Writer
In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, Waco City Councilman Hector Sabido will be highlighting accomplishments in Latino culture while discussing the importance of voting on Friday at noon.
Sabido said that the Hispanic Leaders’ Network hosts quarterly luncheons with guest speakers. However, this will be the first one that is able to happen since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He said that he has been preparing for this event for a little over 30 days now and wants to allocate half of his speaking time for a Q&A session.
“I want to know what’s interesting, what is a concern to them, what are things that we can do as a community… to really address those things that are maybe very near and dear to some people,” Sabido said.
Sabido says that he aims to emphasize the Waco hispanic communities’ accomplishments.
“My goal is to celebrate the Hispanic culture, the people, the leaders, but also those that are making things happen that we don’t hear about in the news, that we don’t hear about on social media,” Sabido said. “Those hard-working moms and dads that are doing the right thing every single day to make sure their children get an education.”
He said he also wants to emphasize that this is the first time where school district, city, county, state and national elections are on the same voting ticket.
“I’m going to drive home the fact of the importance of voting,” Sabido said. “And how there’s an estimated 32 million Hispanics, or Latinos, that are eligible to vote this coming November, and so we can make our voice and our agenda known to the rest of the country.”
He said that local elections are what impact individuals the most.
“When you’re dealing with county commissioners and city council and school board members, they make decisions on a weekly basis that affect us the most,” Sabido said. “It is very imperative that we have people that represent our voice on those local levels because that’s where public policy can change the most.”
Dr. Elizabeth Palacios, dean for Student Development, also said that the Latinx Student Success Initiative, or LSSI, came up with the idea for a collaborative effort on campus to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month.
“We thought then, from this, that we could at least collaborate across the faculty, staff and students and say ‘instead of all of us having a bunch of activities, then we would be able to coordinate this together,” Palacios said, “so our students would have one full calendar of what’s happening on campus.”
The calendar highlighting future events can be found on the Multicultural Affairs website.
Pasadena senior and Vice President of the Hispanic Student Association Leo Robles said he is additionally planning a celebration in the SUB Bowl on October 8.
“We’re actually going to be having a QR code and doing some information about historical figures that have passed and then also some more modern people today that are doing great things,” Robles said.
The HSA is continuing to do online meetings and discussing virtual events on their Instagram.
“A lot of our online participation we get about 20 to 30 students come out when they’re there,” Robles said. “We also record it and email it out.”
Palacios said she feels that it is important for students to learn about Hispanic heritage as the more we learn about others, the more we learn about ourselves.
“[Hispanic students account for] over 2,000 students and we want to learn about Texas because Texas will be majority-minority very soon,” Palacios said. “We’re better for it when we understand and celebrate and appreciate each other.”