UTPA to host Pan American Days April 3-7
Posted: 03/21/2006
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The University of Texas-Pan American will bring Latin America to the Rio Grande Valley April 3-7 as the campus celebrates its annual event Pan American Days.

Hosted by the Office of International Programs, the week offers the University community and the public a wide range of academic and cultural activities related to Americans of all ages and nationalities from 24 different nations. Its goal is to promote and strengthen bonds of friendship and understanding that unite these countries.

Initiated by official proclamations throughout the Western Hemisphere, Pan American Day or Week is an official recognition of the anniversary of the day when the Pan American Union was established in 1890. The Pan American Union, the former name of the General Secretariat of the Organization of American States headquartered in Washington, D.C., was created to promote international cooperation, share technical and informational services, serve as a repository of international documents and further economic, social, juridical and cultural relations among its members.

Throughout the week's celebration at UTPA, an exhibit on Chicano and Mexican Folk Art will be shown in the University Library Lobby with an opening ceremony on Monday, April 3 at 5 p.m. followed by a Latin American food tasting at the Library Media Courtyard. A Latin American Film Series will also be shown in the John H. Shary Room of the University Library on that day.

Among the many Pan American Day speakers are the Honorable Jaime Aparicio Otero, former Bolivian Ambassador to the United States, who will speak on "Political Changes in Latin America and Bolivia," April 5, at 7 p.m. in the Library Media Theater and Dr. Alfredo Angulo Rivas, a Fulbright Scholar, who will speak on "What is Happening in Venezuela?," April 3, at 4:30 p.m. in the Health Sciences and Human Services Building (East), Room 1.114.

Additional Pan American Days speakers include Dr. Isidro Morales, Fulbright Scholar, who will discuss "Contested Regionalism in the Americas: U.S. vs. Brazilian Approach, Convergence or Confrontation?," Tuesday, April 4 at 9:10 a.m. in the Social and Behavioral Sciences Building, Room 125 and Dr. Anthony Feinstein, professor of psychiatry at the University of Toronto, speaking April 5 at 6 p.m. in the Health Science and Human Services East Building, Room 1.208, on "War, Journalists and Their Psychological Well-being."

Danse Adje, a dance academy from Austin, will hold a Haitian Dance Workshop on Monday April 3, at 10:45 a.m. at the Dance Studio (H & K 133) and a Cuban Drum Workshop on the same day at 1:45 p.m. in the Fine Arts Building, Room 119.

Throughout the week UTPA professors will also participate at various locations on campus in special lectures, debates and panel discussions on topics that reflect Latin American perspectives in their individual disciplines. Some of the topics include the pros and cons of hemisphere free trade and traditional folk therapy in the Americas to name a few.

A Study Abroad Fair highlighting travel abroad opportunities for students will also be held at the UTPA Library Media Courtyard Tuesday, April 4 at 11:30 a.m.

For more information, contact the Office of International Programs at 956/381-3572 or via e-mail at or visit the Web site