Hispanic Heritage Celebrated At Holyoke High School

HHS Honors Hispanic Heritage with Hit Assembly.

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Hispanic Heritage Celebrated At Holyoke High School

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On Friday October 7th, Holyoke High held an assembly for HHS students in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month. There were two different assembly times; tenth and eleventh grade students went to the first assembly and twelve and ninth grade students went to the second. The hosts were Kenny Roshay and Vianca Gonzalez who did Spanish translating.

Josie Valentin was the first speaker at the assembly. Valentin talked about her experiences being a Holyoke City Councilor and HCC employee and she also talked about her Latina heritage. She spoke about how Holyoke’s population is 50% Hispanic and the Holyoke school population is 80% Hispanic and the importance of those percentages. She discussed how students need to appreciate diversity wherever their futures may take them and she also discussed the importance of unity.

The second speaker at the assembly was Israel Rivera, HHS ’03. Israel spoke about his experiences being of Spanish heritage and told the students, “You have to remember your culture and where you come from at the end of the day.”

“I thought the speakers at the assembly did a great job,” said Janessa Rodriguez Medina HHS ’19. “The assembly made me feel really proud of my Puerto Rican heritage.”

Also at the assembly were three HHS students who performed original poetry. The poets were Alex Ortiz, Gabriel Camacho, and J Anthony Smith whose piece was entitled “Conflicting Cultures”. Star Dancers Unity, featuring HHS students, kicked up the energy at the assembly with their dance moves. The assembly also featured a variety of musical performances. The HHS Madrigal Choir sang and Kenny Roshay rapped in both English and Spanish along with Audrianna Cruz who sang. Also the group Bomba de Aqui played bomba, a traditional musical style of Puerto Rico, to close out the assembly.

The assembly provided a great way for students to celebrate Hispanic culture. Megan Beaudry, HHS ’18, told The Herald, The assembly was really nice and it was run very well! I really enjoyed the dancing by Star Dancers Unity, especially since I knew some of the girls performing. It was really nice that our school celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month since most of our school is of Hispanic heritage.”

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