Meet Melanie Krugel: Melanie Krugel is a program adviser in the Memorial Student Center Programs Office where she advises the Committee for the Awareness of Mexican American Culture (CAMAC) and Aggie Cinema. She has been with the department since October 2010. Krugel is also currently serving as the president of the Texas A&M Professional Hispanic Network. Krugel received her master’s degree in communications and leadership from Gonzaga University and her bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Kansas.
Hispanic Heritage Month: Celebrating History and Community
As Hispanic Heritage Month comes to a close, it is important to recognize it as a time for our community to celebrate our diverse heritage, history, accomplishments and look toward our future. It also gives us a chance to bring awareness to a variety of cultures and groups of people from countries all over the world and allow them to tell their stories.
Hispanic Heritage Month also recognizes the multiple independence days that are celebrated in various countries throughout the months of September and October. Sept. 15 is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on Sept. 16 and Sept.18, respectively. Also, Columbus Day or Día de la Raza, which is Oct. 12, falls within this 30-day period.
The Professional Hispanic Network (PHN) and the rest of the Hispanic Heritage Month committee play a very large role in bringing awareness of HHM to campus as well as planning an exciting calendar of events and programs for the entire campus and community to attend.
The Professional Hispanic Network or PHN is a professional organization on campus that unites and supports the Hispanic/Latino faculty and staff at Texas A&M. We are big advocates of Hispanic issues and know the value of celebrating our culture in this great institution and the surrounding community.
That’s why PHN coordinates the calendar of events for Hispanic Heritage Month. Each year, Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988.
As far as events go, this year we were very fortunate to have such a diverse group of programs, and I hope students, faculty and staff were able to attend as many as they could. Each program contributes so much to the month and has a unique story to tell.
Our hope is that not only Hispanics or Latinos come to these events, but that all Aggies take part of this exciting time on campus and be part of something bigger. Whether you’re looking for an interesting lecture, music, food, fun, or all of the above, we’ve got you covered. If you couldn’t attend any events this year, we invite you to come next year. We can’t guarantee that it will be at the same time of course, but there are definitely some incredible programs and events that everyone is welcome to attend.