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Latin American and Hispanic Heritage Month

What is Latin American & Hispanic Heritage Month?

Latin American & Hispanic Heritage Month (LAHHM), recognized annually from September 15 through October 15, is the official celebration honoring the history, cultural diversity, and unique contributions of individuals and communities whose ancestry can be traced back to Spain, Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on September 15 and ending on October 15. It was enacted into law on August 17, 1988, on the approval of Public Law 100-402. September 15th coincides with the Independence Day celebrations of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua, followed shortly thereafter by Mexico (Sept. 16) and Chile (Sept. 18). Día de la Raza and Indigenous Peoples Day, recognized on the second Monday of October, also fall within this 30-day period.


At Vanderbilt University, the Student Center for Social Justice & Identity curates a calendar of events related to Latin American & Hispanic heritage, featuring programs from across campus and the Nashville community.

LAHHM 2023: #SomosVU

As in past years, the 2023 Latin American & Hispanic Heritage Month theme is #SomosVU, which translates to “We are Vanderbilt.”

This dynamic message calls the community into conversation and emphasizes the values of connection, inclusion, and celebration that are engrained in LAHHM. #SomosVU addresses the need for the visibility of Latin American and Hispanic presence, influence, and representation on campus while honoring the accomplishments of Latin American and Hispanic leaders and groups across Vanderbilt’s campus. #SomosVU encourages faculty-student mentor relationships, as well as solidarity among allies, to create opportunities to celebrate and elevate their Latin American & Hispanic peers. #SomosVU charges all of us to build an inclusive Latin American & Hispanic community at Vanderbilt University.

The print version of the calendar will be available soon, and if you would like a PDF version please click here. The calendar is consistently being updated.