The Office of Multicultural Student Services at the University of Central Arkansas will host its annual Hispanic Heritage Celebration at 7 p.m. today at Ida Waldran Auditorium, said Angela Jackson, multicultural student services director.
“We try to do something different every year, if we can,” Jackson said. “(The celebration) allows our American students an opportunity to learn about another culture.”
The celebration, held every year for at least the past five years, recognizes UCA’s fastest growing minority population — Hispanic students. That group grew by 7.3 percent from a year ago to 325 students, UCA records show. Over the past five years, the number of Hispanic students grew about 68 percent.
The UCA celebration features the Yumare Mexican Folkloric Dancers, a dance company out of Oklahoma that will preform traditional dances from Mexico, Jackson said.
“Attendees will experience a slice of the splendor of Mexico’s diverse culture through music, dance and storytelling,” according to a UCA news release Monday.
Last year about 150 students turned out to see the celebration, Jackson said.
The event, sponsored by Jackson’s office, the Student Government Association and the Mentorship Program, is free and open to the public. The event gives students and Faulkner County residents a way to experience a different culture.
“I’m hoping and praying that we have a good turnout,” Jackson said.
CORRECTION: This story originally said Hispanic students are the largest minority group at UCA. They are the fastest-growing.