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Instructor, students share in IU East MLK award

By Cynthia Vaughn
Luz Mary Rincon, lecturer in foreign language at IU East, along with all her fall semester Spanish students, were named co-winners of the 2003 Martin Luther King Jr. Multicultural and Diversity Enhancement Award at the annual MLK birthday celebration Jan. 16 at the Richmond campus.

Rincon arranged the first Latino Heritage Celebration Week at IU East, which took place in October. She involved students in preparing and carrying out a lecture series, a film discussion series, a heritage display and a full Mexican buffet.
Bryan Kanney, Luz Mary Rincon and Shelly Cox

"To me, enhancing multiculturalism and diversity in a foreign language class is one of the most important aspects of learning the language," Rincon said.

"It has been said that 'when you learn a language, you are not only learning a language—you are learning a people,'" stated IU East Chancellor David Fulton. "Luz Mary, as MLK would have done, embodies this goal, which means breaking racial, national and cultural barriers." Spanish students Ellen Shelton, Bryan Kanney, Susan Liebert and Shelly Cox were all present along with Rincon to accept the award.

Rincon, a native of Colombia, is a graduate of the Universidad Industrial de Santander, Bucaramanga, Colombia. She is currently a doctoral candidate in applied linguistics at Ball State University. She is on the board of the Richmond Community Builders, participates in the Summit on Race Relations, is a member of the IU East Diversity Cabinet and works with Amigos in Richmond. At the women's conference at IU East in March. Rincon will be speaking about Hispanic women's issues and how she is integrating that topic into her teaching.

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Publication date: January 31, 2003
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