Hispanic Heritage 2023

September 15 – October 15, 2023

National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated from Sept. 15 through Oct. 15. The 30-day period commemorates the many contributions and cultural influences from those with Spanish, Mexican, Caribbean and Central and South American heritage.

Celebrating Hispanic heritage began in 1968 when Hispanic Heritage Week was renamed under President Lyndon B. Johnson, according to hispanicheritagemonth.gov. The week was expanded to Hispanic Heritage Month in 1988 under President Ronald Reagan to cover a full 30-day period.

Sept. 15 was chosen since it is the anniversary of the independence of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. Mexico and Chile have their independence days on Sept. 16 and Sept. 18, respectively.

Hispanic Heritage Month was enacted into law on Aug. 17, 1988, on the approval of Public Law 100-402.

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Triton College is proudly celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month with Events Around Campus

Enjoy a Co-Worker Connect event in honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month!

Samuel del Campo
“Righteous Among the Nations”
By Yad Vashem, World Holocaust Remembrance

In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, Triton College’s Professional Development Center encourages employees to learn more about Samuel del Campo, a Chilean diplomat who saved Jews during the Holocaust. During Jewish American Heritage Month in May, the US Department of Education celebrated the life of this historical hero, which makes him even more significant.

To learn more about Samuel del Campo, visit YouTube. Be sure to enable closed captioning and select “settings” for English translations.

Read the book about Samuel del Campo.

Lessons From the Dead: A Student Leadership Symposium
Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2023
10 a.m.-Noon
Library Main Commons

All students and faculty are invited to engage in an open forum conversation regarding leadership and lessons learned! Students will discuss how their mentors have lived on through them and how they’ve inspired their generation. Students will present their opinions on what they believe creates a great leader and pull from those who have since passed to guide their intent.
For more information, contact at alexandergutierrez@triton.edu.

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Hispanic Heritage Month Discussion Panel: Diversidad Nos Define (diversity defines us)

Join us as we wrap up Hispanic Heritage Month with a panel of fellow Triton College employees. Snacks and coffee will be available while listening to conversations about diversity, identity, and our journeys.

Host: Triton College
Moderator: Julia Willis, Dean of Students
Monday, October 16, 2023
12pm (doors open) – 1:30pm
Library Main Commons; Seats 50 to 60 people comfortably (limited seating).

HHM Discussion Panelists

Maria G. Solorio
Lead, Custodial/Grounds
Maria G. Solorio started at Triton College as custodian in 2020. Solorio has the ability to work well with others and takes pride in the work that she does. Solorio is dependable, hardworking, punctual, and a self-starter. Her hard work and dedication allowed her to become lead Supervisor shortly after starting at Triton College. Her duties also extend to being on College Council and helping and hosting at various events at Triton College.

Chef Manny Uribe-Espin
Department Chair of Hospitality Industry Administration
Chef Manny Uribe had the good fortune of finding his passion for cooking and culinary arts at a young age. Before graduating high school, the aspiring chef earned credits at Triton College through a dual credit program.

After graduating, he quickly established himself in Chicago’s culinary scene, currently working as a traveling support chef for Bon Appetit Management Company.

Inspired by his college instructors, he’s now returned to his alma mater, Triton College – where he is a faculty member and Chair of the HIA department. He enjoys sharing his knowledge and passion for cooking with the next generation of culinary professionals.

In a world that is dominated by convenience and increasingly unsustainable ways of living, Chair and Chef Manny Uribe-Espin strives every day to teach culinary literacy and emphasize the importance of caring for our environment and minimizing waste. Before students pick up a knife in his class he takes them to the horticulture department so, in light of cooking with fresh produce, they can see the amount of time and effort that goes into the food before it is even prepared. Uribe-Espin is painfully aware of how easy it is to be able to drive a mile or less from your home and pick up poorly prepared and poorly sourced food in a fraction of the time it might take the same person to pick up groceries and cook a meal for their entire family. Uribe-Espin feels that it is his responsibility as a culinary instructor at Triton to instill an appreciation for food and its preparation.

Hector R. Hernandez, MSW
Retention Specialist for Business & Technology
Born and raised in Chicago, Hector R. Hernandez has been in the education field for 14 years. Hernandez wants to create a culture of equity and inclusion in education. He uses strength-based approaches, empathy and understanding to help guide students though their path at Triton College. Hernandez relies on the relationships he builds with his students to help foster their success.

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Axia T. Vazquez
Scholarship Coordinator in Financial Aid
Axia Vazquez is the Scholarship Coordinator at Triton College. Triton is the first job she has ever had starting at the age of 18 as a federal work study student and has moved her way up in the financial aid department. She has gained eight years of experience being a Triton employee. Not only is she an employee but she’s also a Triton Alumni that graduated with her associate degree in arts. Her experience being an employee and also a student helps her relate to our students with challenges they may face while attending college. Her passion is to help students succeed with their educational goals.

Gabriel E. Guzman, Ph. D.
Professor and Coordinator of the Biotechnology Laboratory Technician Program
Born in Guatemala City, Guatemala, Dr. Gabriel Guzman earned his undergraduate degree in Biochemistry at Universidad del Valle, where he became an associate researcher to the Center for Health Studies at that institution.

In 1993, his research work in River Blindness afforded him to be selected to participate in the Karolinska Institute Research and Training Program, (KIRT), sponsored by the Swedish Development Aid Authority, where he earned his master’s in medical microbiology in 1996.

In 1998, after a brief period back in Guatemala, where he continued his research studying parasites from Guatemala and Ghana, Dr. Guzman was invited by KIRT to pursue his doctoral degree in infectious disease control, which he earned in 2002.

Dr. Guzman left Sweden in 2003 to continue a 3-year post-doctoral training in molecular endocrinology at Duke University Medical Center, and the Hamner Institute of Health in North Carolina. His teaching career in higher education in the United States began in 2006, teaching as Adjunct Instructor at Illinois Central Community College (Peoria, IL).

In 2007, Dr. Guzman was hired as Full-time faculty at Triton College where he has since been teaching Microbiology, and more recently Cell & Tissue Culture for the biotechnology program, a program he currently coordinates. Throughout his tenure, Dr. Guzman received the Full Time Faculty of the Year award, served as Associate Dean of Arts & Sciences for three years, and as Chair of the Science Department for six, until December 2021. Dr. Guzman enjoys combining art and science in his pedagogy and is always exploring innovating teaching methods that not only increase student engagement, but also help them to develop their intrinsic motivation. Dr. Guzman summarizes his teaching philosophy by quoting Barbara Harrell Carson on learning: "Students learn what they care about, from people they care about and who, they know, care about them."

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Past events...

Churros and Treats
Friday, Sept. 15, 2023
12:30 p.m.

EnsAmble Ad-Hoc
Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2023
7 p.m.
Performing Arts Center, R Building
Free admission to the Triton community.

EnsAmble Ad-Hoc’s Dr. Francy Acosta and José Luis Posada will perform and discuss traditional works from their native country of Colombia, as well as songs from Peru, Venezuela and Mexico.
For more information, please contact salvatoresiriano@triton.edu.

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Enjoy Library Movie Features during Hispanic Heritage Month!

The Library will also feature Hispanic-heritage book displays for the months of September and October!

Please note that one must be a current Triton community member logged into the Triton portal to be able to access the movies online. Join us in person to watch the showings!

The Triton College Library Features the “Now Showing” Movie Series EVERY Thursday.

In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month:
They Called Me King Tiger: A Biography of the Chicano Malcolm X
Thursday, Oct. 12, 2023
2 p.m.
Triton College Library, A Building

In honor of Italian American Heritage Month:
Stand Up, Speak Out: The Nina Maglionico Story
Thursday, Oct. 19, 2023
2 p.m.
Triton College Library, A Building

In honor of Italian American Heritage Month:
Marilyn Hotchkiss' Ballroom Dancing and Charm School (features multiple Italian American actors)
Thursday, Oct. 26, 2023
2 p.m.
Triton College Library, A Building


Past screenings...

In honor of World College Radio Day:
Speak So I Can See You (Radio Belgrade)
Thursday, Oct. 5, 2023
2 p.m.
Triton College Library, A Building

La Frontera with Pati Jinich: Miles from Nowhere
Thursday, Sept. 21, 2023
2 p.m.
Triton College Library, A Building

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Hispanic Heritage Month Alumni Spotlight
Bulmaro “Bull” Saavedra

Bulmaro “Bull” Saavedra of Morton Grove is the owner of Hay Caramba!, a Mexican restaurant in Park Ridge. With a successful business under his belt, many would think Saavedra achieved the embodiment of the American Dream. However, Saavedra’s road to success has not always been smooth.

Saavedra grew up in Mexico in a small town called Los Sauces, Guerrero. Growing up, he struggled in school and wanted to move to the United States, eventually immigrating to Chicago in 1973. Once in Chicago, he began working for Standard Grinding & Mfg. Co., a machinery business located in Skokie.

“Standard Grinding sent me to Triton College and enrolled me in the Machine Tool Technology Program to learn how to run machinery,” he explained. “At the time, I hardly spoke any English, so going to Triton taught me a lot. It was an amazing school experience.”

Saavedra married his wife Josephine in 1975, and soon after, began thinking about starting his own business. Making this dream a reality, he opened his first restaurant in Chicago, in 1986. By 1989, Saavedra found himself no longer working full time, but spent all his time at the restaurant.

In 1991, Saavedra and his wife decided to open a restaurant in Park Ridge called Hay Caramba! Recently celebrating the 30-year anniversary of their opening, Saavedra noted that Hay Caramba! serves several of their old family recipes, with the fajitas being Saavedra’s favorite.

Although the job can be challenging, since they must sacrifice nights and weekends, Saavedra feels it is worth the hard work they have put into their restaurant. He’s grateful that Triton College gave him the foundation and tools to run and open a successful business.

When Saavedra is not working, he enjoys relaxing with his family and traveling. Saavedra and his wife Josephine have two adult children, Michael and Marlene, who work at the restaurant with their parents.

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In-District Hispanic Heritage Month Gatherings


Past events...

Friday, Sept. 8, 2023
Saturday, Sept. 9, 2023
Sunday, Sept. 10, 2023
Melrose Park Village Complex
1000 N. 25th Ave.
Melrose Park

Cicero to host annual Mexican Independence Day celebration and parade Sept 14 – 17. The Festival features live entertainment, raffles, food, carnival rides and many activities for families and children. Annual Mexican Independence Day Celebration and parade Sept. 14 through Sept. 17 at Cicero Community Fairgrounds 34th and Laramie Avenue.

Annual Mexican Independence Day Parade
Sunday, Sept. 17, 2023
Cicero Community Fairgrounds
Along Cermak Road
Start time: 12pm

Latinx Writer and Activist Prisca Dorcas Mojica Rodriguez Speaking Event
Sunday, Sept. 24, 2023
1-3 p.m.
Oak Park Public Library
834 Lake St.
Oak Park

Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration
Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023
5-6 p.m.
Broadview Public Library
2226 S. 16th Avenue

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Other Hispanic Heritage Month Gatherings


Latinx Heritage Month
Field Museum
Sept. 15-Oct. 15

Hear from Latinx staff members and learn about the Field Museum’s work, from Chicago to the Amazon rainforest. Explore events, exhibitions and stories throughout the month.

Past events...

21th Annual Pilsen Mexican Independence Day Parade
Saturday, Sept. 9, 2023
19th St. from Newberry to Wolcott
Start Time: Noon

26th Street Mexican Independence Day Parade
Saturday, Sept. 16, 2023
26th St. from Albany to Kostner
Start Time: Noon

Annual Mexican Patriotic Parade
Sunday, Sept. 17, 2023
87th and Commercial Ave., South to 100th and Commercial Ave.
Start Time: 1 p.m.

Chicago White Sox
Hispanic Heritage Night
Saturday, Sept. 30, 2023
White Sox vs. Padres
6:10 p.m.

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Support Hispanic-Owned Restaurants

Enjoy lunch or dinner at Triton College’s Café 64 and Bistro, run and operated by Triton College instructor and alumni, Chef Manny Uribe!

5:30-7 p.m.
B-225 (B Building)
2000 Fifth Ave.
River Grove
To make a reservation, please call (708) 456-0300, Ext. 3267.

Café 64
11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
B-201 (B Building)
2000 Fifth Ave.
River Grove
To make a reservation, please call (708) 456-0300, Ext. 3267.

Maria’s Mexican Restaurant
9440 Foster Ave.
(773) 992-2288

El Burrito Amigo
9503 Grand Ave.
Franklin Park
(847) 288-0288

Los Comales Melrose Park
2110 W. Lake St.
Melrose Park
(708) 345-8500

Hay Caramba!
122 S. Prospect Ave.
Park Ridge
(847) 518-0747


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Support Hispanic-Owned Businesses

M&M Pro Audio
8116 W. Grand Ave.
River Grove
(708) 716-3365

Aracely’s Bakery
9667 Franklin Ave.
Franklin Park
(847) 455-7658

Luna’s Ice Cream Place
9759 Franklin Ave.
Franklin Park
(847) 260-5723


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Hispanic Books and Authors

  • I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter by Erika Sanchez
  • A Lot Like Adiós by Alexis Daria
  • Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
  • Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo
  • Don’t Ask Me Where I’m From by Jennifer De Leon
  • Of Women and Salt by Gabriela Garcia
  • Where Are You From? by Yamile Saied Méndez

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Hispanic Achievements

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Additional Hispanic Heritage Links


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