Latino faculty and students at the University of Michigan are set to showcase their latest findings in the annual Latinx Research Week, a series of talks and poster presentations hosted by the Latino graduate student organization Puentes.
Their latest work will be unveiled at the Michigan League with livestreaming options for remote viewing. The event will feature an opening ceremony in the ballroom from 5-9 p.m. March 13, followed by departmental sessions in various rooms from noon-8 p.m. March 14-16. Registration is required.
Attendees can look forward to an engaging and interactive experience, as they get a firsthand look at the diverse range of projects on display ranging from social sciences to STEM, all presented through the lens of Latino culture and experiences.
“Our goal for LRW is to showcase the research being done by Latinx researchers and also showcase research being done on Latinx populations,” said Ivette González, vice president of Puentes.
“This made us a lot more visible and made students excited about participating,” said Victoria Vezaldenos, president of Puentes. “Our vision is to grow this and be a national conference for Latinos in academia that is hosted at U-M every year.”
Students raised $25,000 for this year’s event, a significant increase from the $700 spent on last year’s research week.
“I think LRW is important because it will showcase the amazing work Latinx researchers are doing in a variety of disciplines,” González said. “It’s important for the faculty and staff to see what the students are doing, but also for undergraduates to see representation in a variety of fields.”
The upcoming research week at U-M is not only an opportunity to highlight the latest research from Latino faculty and students, but also a strategic tool for recruiting.
“It may also help undergraduates learn about the different career pathways they may want to pursue that they didn’t think were attainable or even known about,” González said.
The hope is that by exposing students to different career paths and work of Latino scholars, the event will attract more Latino representation from across the country and recognize their value and contributions.
Vezaldenos said although the focus of the event is primarily on academics, attendees can expect a dose of entertainment.
“Although this is an academic conference, we want it to feel somewhat informal, like a celebration you would have at home with your family,” she said. “Having a DJ and dance floor is that extra element that allows us to create a sense of community and celebration within an academic environment.
“This is something we do not see in academia, and Puentes hopes to push this boundary making LRW a unique space for networking, sharing scholarship and building community.”