This episode is a syndicated replay from Season 10 of LEAD Summit 2019. The theme that year was “¡Su Voto Es Su Voz - Everyone Counts! For the U.S. to create a positive future, it will require a Latino citizenry that more greatly participates in the American democratic process, and that is poised to shape the U.S. political landscape through voting and civic engagement. Among the Featured Speakers that year was the Honorable Alex Padilla, who at the time was serving as the California Secretary of State, and had modernized the office, increased voter registration and participation, and strengthened voting rights. Padilla served as Grand Marshall helping kick off our LEAD Summit by leading the “Procession of Hope” with Cal State San Bernardino’s first 15 graduates of its educational doctorate program, 35 brand new U.S. citizens, and 24 Dreamers and undocumented youth. The inaugural procession was emotionally overwhelming and there was not a dry eye in the room.
Procession of Hope: Welcome to the 10th year anniversary of our annual Latino Education and Advocacy Days Summit - LEAD. Who are we?: The broad spectrum of researchers, teaching professionals and educators, academics, scholars, administrators, independent writers and artists, policy and program specialists, students, parents, families, civic leaders, activists, and advocates. In short, those sharing a common interest and commitment to educational issues that impact Latinos.
Over the past decades, Latinos have emerged as the largest minority in the nation, with majority populations in many states and regions, and in some cases, the majority demographic among school-age children. In many ways, this is our moment as a major cultural influence on art, music, food, and so forth. Our workers, too, are the backbone of many sectors of the intertwining local, regional, state, national and global economies. Yet, the strength of our schools and communities, basically, “our place in the world”, is impossible to evaluate without focusing on the educational outcomes of Latino students.
Latinos continue to have some of the highest drop-out/push-out rates, score among the lowest on achievement tests, and have low college enrollment and graduation rates. Both Latino students and teachers have a high mobility rate, are located in racially segregated communities with high poverty rates, and attend schools with fewer resources, staffing, and programs.
The purpose of LEAD is to promote a broad-based awareness of the crisis in Latino Education and to enhance the intellectual, cultural and personal development of our community’s educators, administrators, leaders, parents and students. As this is the 10th year anniversary of the LEAD Summit, it is for us a celebration and an opportunity to review and celebrate our collective accomplishments and fruits of our labor.
The 2019 Procession of Hope / Procesión de la Esperanzais made up of three strands; doctoral graduates, new US citizens, and undocumented youth.
The doctors are graduates of the Doctor of Education degree program in Educational Leadership from California State University, San Bernardino. It is a dynamic program which provides preparation for educational leaders for schools, community colleges, and related areas within education.
Emergent Questions Guiding the CSUSB Ed.D. Program:
- What are the most pressing challenges facing our educational institutions/communities across the Inland Empire?
- What kinds of educational leaders does our region need for the 21st Century? (what should they know, be able to do, etc.)
- What does education for social justice look like in the Inland Empire?
The new US citizens received citizenship preparation and assistance with the naturalization process from our featured partner TODEC Legal Center, and demonstrate TODEC’s lifelong commitment to civic engagement via their #NaturalizeIE Campaign. There are over 250,000 Legal Permanent Residents (LPR) eligible for naturalization in the Inland Empire and TODEC is assisting eligible LPR’s on the daily basis at no cost. Low-income LPR’s may also apply for a fee waiver for USCIS fees and if approved USCIS will waive their application processing fees.
The undocumented youth are from both TODEC’s Monarcas LuchadorasYouth Leadership Program as well as CSUSB’s Undocumented Student Success Center. Monarcas Luchadoras gets its name from the Monarch Butterfly which personifies the struggle for justice, dignity, and equality. Monarch Butterfly migration is symbolic of transnationalism and cross border relationships.
The Undocumented Student Success Center serves to create a welcoming, dynamic resource environment for our undocumented student population and to provide a safe place where AB540 allies and other persons with a common interest for underserved populations can congregate, exchange ideas and provide support to one another and their students.
The three strands - doctoral graduates, new US citizens, and undocumented youth - make a braid (trenza) as in a metaphor for understanding the experiences and perspectives of the educational plight of Latinos. The processional strands help us visualize the critical and nuanced understandings of how personal, professional, and community identities not only shape Latino education in our experiences and perspectives, but serve to highlight the historically significant moment of the LEAD Summit’s 10th year anniversary.
- Color Guard Presentation: Air Force Junior ROTC, West Covina High School
- Pledge of Allegiance: Jesus Acuña-Perez, Capt. (ret), USAF, Senior Aerospace Science Instructor, West Covina High School
- National Anthem: Star Kafovalu-Wildes, Academic Advisor and Social Media Coordinator, Advising & Academic Services, CSUSB
- Grand Marshall: Honorable Alex Padilla, California Secretary of State
- Procession: Recent Doctorate Graduates, Newly Naturalized U.S. Citizens, and Undocumented Youth & Dreamers
CSUSB - Latino Education and Advocacy Days (LEAD), "Opening Ceremony: "Procession of Hope / Procesión de la Esperanza"" (2019). Latino Education and Advocacy Days (LEAD) Video Recordings. 31.