LSU honors students, faculty

On Thursday, April 17, the Latino Student Union will recognize Latino and non-Latino students, faculty, and staff for their achievements and accomplishments on campus at the Latino Student Union Awards Banquet.

According to Latino Student Affairs Coordinator Leo Calderon, the number of Latino students on campus has risen 87 percent since the fall of 2000.

The LSU has worked diligently to create a welcoming environment for the new Latino students, as well as non-Latino students who are interested in Latino culture. For example, during National Hispanic Heritage Month, LSU sponsored lectures, panel discussions, cultural activities, and a social events. Also, LSU members participate in community service through Latino community outreach programs such as Su Casa and Centro de Amistad.

At the banquet, the LSU will present six student awards, including one that holds a special place in the hearts of LSU members: the Tom Fontova Award.

“Fontova was dedicated to confronting injustice and studying the ideas of Martin Luther King Jr., Mother Teresa, Malcolm X, and Mahatma Gandhi,” said sophomore Brandon Hill.

Tom Fontova was an active member of LSU and the vice-president of STAR who committed suicide last semester.

An anonymous advocator of Fontova’s on-campus servitude donated monies to keep his memory alive through the award. The candidate for the award must demonstrate open-mindedness, generosity, and social activism. “We want to continue the legacy of Tom Fontova,” commented Leo Calderon.

Other student awards include: Academic Award, Leadership Award, Civic Involvement Award, Outstanding Latino Student Union Award, Outstanding Latino Student Union Community Work Award.

Candidates for the student awards must demonstrate an array of qualities such as good academic standing, involvement in the Latino community, leadership positions, and commitment to having a positive impact on the Latino community.

The LSU will also present an award to a faculty/staff member who specializes in being a role model for Latino students.

This event begins at 6:30 p.m. and costs $10. It is an open community event. RSVP to Leo Calderon at (859) 572-5821.