Purdue's School of Languages and Cultures, College of Veterinary Medicine provide Afterschool Spanish Heritage Language program

February 17, 2014  


WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Purdue University's School of Languages and Cultures and College of Veterinary Medicine will join to provide an afterschool program in veterinary medicine at Wea Ridge Elementary and Friendly Village Mobile Home Park in Lafayette.

The first one-hour workshop will take place Thursday (Feb. 20) at Wea Ridge as part of the ongoing Spanish literacy program "Aprendiendo a Leer" (learning to read), directed by Alejandro Cuza, an assistant professor of Spanish and Linguistics at Purdue.

"The School of Languages and Cultures has been working with the Hispanic community in Lafayette very closely for the last 15 years, and we continue to strive to engage our undergraduate students more with our community while reaching out to those who need us the most," Cuza said.

Faculty and students from the School of Languages and Cultures and College of Veterinary Medicine will provide veterinary lessons in Spanish to students from kindergarten through fifth grades, said Sandra San Miguel, associate dean for engagement and professor of veterinary clinical sciences.

San Miguel said students will learn about animal skulls, germs, healthy food, and exercise choices for people and dogs. All the lessons will be in Spanish.

Cuza and San Miguel said the program's goal is to foster the maintenance and development of Spanish as a heritage language and bilingual ability within the context of health literacy, and reduce health disparities in people and animals.

"The Purdue veterinary medicine team has been delivering weekly vet lessons in partnership with the Hanna Community Center and is excited to expand this programming to Greater Lafayette's Hispanic community, in collaboration with the School of Languages and Cultures," San Miguel said.

"This new engagement and research initiative brings the humanities and STEM together. It transcends the boundaries of colleges and it reaches out to the little ones who benefit so much from our colleagues," said JoAnn Miller, professor of sociology and associate dean for interdisciplinary programs and engagement in the College of Liberal Arts. 

Writer: Greg McClure, 765-496-9711, gmcclure@purdue.edu 

Sources: Sandra San Miguel, 765-494-8052, amass@purdue.edu

Alejandro Cuza, acuza@purdue.edu

JoAnn Miller, 765-496-7276, jlmiller@purdue.edu 

Note to Journalists: The program begins at 3:30 p.m. Thursday (Feb. 20) at Wea Ridge Elementary and at 4:30 p.m. Friday (Feb. 21) at Friendly Village. Journalists interested in doing a story about the program or covering it, should contact Alejandro Cuza, acuza@purdue.edu, or Sandra San Miguel, 765-494-8052, amass@purdue.edu.

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