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Latino U: The UNM Experience

Image: Rafael A. Martínez"

Mon. 8/28, 7p: Espejos de Aztlán show will take you on a historical journey through the experience of Latino students at UNM from the Civil Rights period to the present day! We will be featuring alum who have made historical strides for equality along with current student leaders and staff who fight to make UNM a welcoming space.


Frankie Flores talks about the realities that many students face beyond the classroom and campus:“My first semester was really rough. I was homeless actually. My queerness didn’t really matter, I was just trying to eat and not sleep out in the Duck Pond.”


Alum, Julia Maestas describes how she experienced cultural shock when she first arrived at UNM: “I was like WOW I’m brown! Even though I knew that, it was so different to experience being brown. And for the first time I was amongst many white students and I had not really understood what that meant.”

Suyent Rodriguez focuses on the importance of unity among diverse ethnic and cultural groups: “We need the Ethnic Centers to come together and create a space that is welcoming to people that fit more than one of these categories.”

Full contributors for the show include: staff member of El Centro de la Raza, Alejandro Mendiaz-Rivera, staff members of the LGTBQ Center, Frankie Flores and Janice Devereaux. We include the voices of  alumni students from Julia Maestas, Erica Gallegos, Suyent Rodriguez, and graduate student Elias Lopez. We talk about the state of Latino students through campus leaders, Eric DeLorme, Sean Campos, Mario Esparza, Darlene Castillo and Adriana Molina.


Rafael is a PhD candidate in American Studies at the University of New Mexico. His research involves a deep social, historical and political analysis of immigrant rights and undocumented youth. As an UndocuScholar Activist, Rafael is engaged in projects that seek to connect academic work with community development. Rafael is the founder of the Humans of New Mexico, a statewide media oral history project. As a member of the Raíces Collective, he hosts the monthly “Humans of New Mexico” show on Espejos de Aztlán, where stories from all over the state are featured. rafaelmartinez@kunm.org
Bobby Gutierrez is a lifelong New Mexican, is a photographer, radio host, and glazier. His work with two local collectives, Raíces of KUNM and Humans of New Mexico, focuses on celebrating the culture and people of the state. In addition to contributing his photography to HNM he also helps produce the monthly "Humans of New Mexico" show for Espejos de Aztlán and co-hosts the music show "Raíces".
Froilan Orozco is a Master’s candidate in American Studies at the University of New Mexico. His interests are in cinematic representations, Mexican American history, borderlands, and the U.S. Southwest. He is a collective member of Humans of New Mexico, a statewide media oral history project, and hosts their monthly show on Espejos de Aztlán as a member in the Raíces Collective.froilanorozco@kunm.org
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