USU Linguistics Professor Maria Luisa Spicer-Escalante addressing Latinx Education Fair attendees about the benefits of a higher education.
LOGAN – Various community organizations collaborated to host the Fourth Latinx Education Fair outreach event on higher education resources available for the Latinx community Saturday at Logan High School.
Hosted by the Logan City School District and sponsored by the Utah State University Latinx Cultural Center and USU Extensions, the fair provided information on the resources available to Latinx students to continue their education.
“The Latino Education Fair is an opportunity for parents and students to come and meet individuals at the school, at the university and in the community who they can go to with questions and for support as our students pursue education after high school graduation” LCSD Superintendent Frank Schofield said.
Parents and students were divided into three smaller groups and engaged in three workshops which included admission information, scholarships available at USU for different students, the benefits of a higher education and the ability to pay for a higher education.
In one of the workshops, parents and students were able to learn about the benefits of not only gaining a higher education but pursuing a career that students are passionate about.
“It doesn’t matter what the parents want, I’m so sorry,” USU Linguistics Professor Maria Luisa Spicer-Escalante said. “If it’s not important for the youth, it doesn’t matter what goals [parents] have.”
Local business owner Rigoberto Chaparro also introduced the Leadership, Education, Achievement and Prosperity Scholarship program to the attendees. He also taught attendees the importance of living under a budget and that paying for college is within reach.
Chaparro said the Latinx community has to change the mindset from working to education.
“There is no reason for you to not get an education,” Chaparro said. “If you don’t get it, it’s because you don’t want to.”
In the past four years, Schofield said the district has seen an increase of students that see the importance of a college education and college is available to them.
“As a result, at Utah State, Logan High School has the highest percentage of first-generation college students registered at Utah State out of any other school in the State of Utah,” Schofield said.
As a first-generation college student himself, Schofield said one of the biggest challenges facing students is not knowing which classes to take to prepare for college. He said one of the best things parents can do for their students, is be involved in their education.
“As parents are more aware of what’s involved in preparing for college, they’re able to give their children more guidance and more support,” Schofield said. “Going away to college is a unique experience and for a lot of families, it can be nerve wracking to send their child away to college especially if they don’t live at home.”
Parents can get information on the college experience and ways to help their child prepare for college by contacting their parent liaisons in the LCSD elementary schools or their child’s counselor in LHS.
“If parents have questions, they can contact their parent liaisons at the elementary schools or they can call the counselors at the high school and they can support them,” Schofield said. “We want to make sure all of our students in the district have the opportunity to get the information they need to set them up for success after high school.”
Nicolas and Maria Hilera, parents that attended the event, said they were so grateful to have the information available to them, especially the scholarship information.
“We are grateful, first of all with God and then with all these people that invest their time in giving us this information,” Nicolas said. “Without them, we wouldn’t know the information and you can’t do anything.”
Maria said it was important for the students to feel the support of the parents.
“They need to feel our support here in the school because a lot of the times, they need us,” Maria said.