FAMU to introduce new student organization


Latinos Uniting Nations to Inspire Diverse Opportunities in Society will host “United We Serve” today in the TRiO Academic building.

Latinos UNIDOS is a newly chartered Florida A&M student organization whose mission is to educate the campus on Latin American and Hispanic culture, history, and to examine the relevance of Hispanic students’ on a Historically Black College and University campus.

Vanity Duran, the president and co-founder of Latinos UNIDOS, said UNIDOS is open to everyone.

“UNIDOS is not limited to any one group of students on campus,” Duran said. “With the competitive work force, it is imperative for students to be diverse and globally educated.”

Latinos UNIDOS mission statement states it will educate members on Latin history and Hispanic culture and that members will communicate with one another to building lifelong alliances by discovering ways to relate with one another through cultural experiences.

Duran, a junior broadcast journalism student from Tampa, said the organization is looking for driven members who want to recruit and retain members. He envisions members promoting, creating and building partnerships in the Latino communities of Tallahassee.

“For this general body meeting, we are looking for pioneers in leadership,” Duran said.

Duran said one of Latinos UNIDOS initiatives is to teach Spanish is to help with global competency.

Tania Diaz, a senior elementary education student from Belle Glade, Fla., said the organization will attract more Hispanic students and FAMU would gain a better sense of diversity.

“We want to educate about the Hispanic culture and bring more unity ato campus,” Diaz said. “It’s all about building friendships first and then networking. We’re going to expand. Like Vanity said before, it’s a revolution.”

The new organization has the support of FAMU faculty and staff.

Jovanny Felix, director of the FAMU TRiO student support services programs, Angela Alvarado Coleman, Ph. D, associate vice president of student affairs, and Jorge L. Olaves, head coach of the FAMU swimming and diving team, are the three advisors for the organization.

Felix said he was was impressed after Duran explained what the organization stood for.

“I’m all about diversity,” Felix said. “Diversity is what makes schools different and special.”

Felix said he has worked at a wide variety of schools and that schools who lack in diversity lag behind others.

Felix said he maintains clear communication with affiliates and that he plans to remain actively involved as a co-advisor by making sure the organization adheres to policy, paperwork and its constitution.

He wants the public to know the organization is not just for Latinos.

“It’s for individuals willing to explore other cultures,” Felix said. “ From sitting in meetings I’ve already learned so much about the Hispanic culture, how it relates to the African-American culture, and how it relates to White America.”

The meeting will be today at 6 p.m. in room 2 of the TRiO Academic building, located at 640 Gamble St.