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The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

Through classes, art teachers aim to grow art appreciation

At Latinidad assembly, students connect diversity, intersectionality, current events

Danny Aronsohn
At the second annual Latinidad assembly, Yolotzin Martinez, co-president of Latinos Unidos, addressed the recent migration crisis, focusing on the situation in Venezuela. In addition to highlighting recent events, the assembly connected intersectionality and diversity within the Latinx community.

With the theme of “Celebrating Latinidad,” Latinos Unidos, alongside other affinity groups and clubs, used the second annual assembly on Oct. 12 to emphasize diversity and intersectionality within the Latinx community, and draw attention to current events, including the recent migrant crisis and the conflict in Israel and the Palestinian territories.

Sari Hernández, Latinos Unidos adviser, welcomed students and delivered a land acknowledgement statement, honoring the Indigenous tribes that inhabited the land on which Chicago and the Laboratory Schools were built. She referenced a recent University of Chicago decision that prohibits institutional land acknowledgment statements.

“Who benefits from impeding the recent increase in land acknowledgements? Who is threatened by these statements? And what happened that caused this directive to be delivered across all our schools? The answers to those questions reflect who our school truly is,” Ms. Hernández said. “I hope that someday we will become the school we aspire to be.”

Guest speaker Ingedia Sanchez, technical director and senior associate at UrbanWorks, a minority women-owned architecture firm based in Chicago, shared her experiences working as a Latina architect and to increase Latinx representation in the architectural field.

“So, to provide support to our members, to find a path to licensure, strengthen our network, it’s important to advocate for leadership for Latinos, for all the contributions and work that we’ve been doing to all the buildings all over the world,” Ms. Sanchez said.

Yolotzin Martinez, Latinos Unidos co-president, spoke on the recent migration crisis, focusing on the situation in Venezuela. She said that many people face unlivable circumstances that have driven an increase in migration to the United States, adding that Operation Lone Star has relocated many of these migrants to sanctuary cities like Chicago. She encouraged students to donate to a clothing drive for Chicago migrants that Latinos Unidos is holding through Oct. 23.

At the end of the assembly, leaders from the Muslim Students’ Association and Jewish Students’ Association delivered a joint message addressing the recent events in Gaza and Israel. Both affinity groups were asked by Latinos Unidos to deliver a statement. It condemned violence and said that no one group or government is representative of an entire people and that criticism can exist alongside compassion.

“I think it was the right thing to talk about this situation now, and I think it was much needed to have a statement in general. I think the reason we made it was also super important,” MSA co-president Yaseen Sufi said. “We wanted to be clear that people could not take this issue and then use it as a justification for antisemitism and/or Islamophobia.”

Zetta Mrizek, co-president of JSA, echoed Yaseen’s sentiments.

“We thought it was necessary to speak out about the violence occurring in Israel and Palestine because such disturbing acts need to be acknowledged,” Zetta said.

Other assembly events included the lead instructor for Mayambo Ladies Semi Pro Team Daniella Leon and Lab lower school world language teacher Sonia Pérez performing a rendition of Tremendo Rumbon Mayambo. Daniella Leon later on had a solo performance to the song Soltando Chispa.

Latinos Unidos members Camila Bravo and Maya Livni shared their poetry that touched on themes of identity, heritage and family.

In a segment honoring intersectionality within the Latinx community, students from the Asian Students’ Association and JSA delivered presentations. ASA explored the history and diversity of Asian Latino populations around the world. JSA explained Ladino, a romance language similar to Spanish, which is spoken by Sephardic Jewish people around the world.

Women in STEM members presented a video which compiled interviews from three Latinas working in science fields at the University of Chicago, sending a message of resilience and strength.

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About the Contributors
Mia Lipson, News Editor
Mia Lipson is a member of the Class of 2025 and serves as news editor. She began journalism in the 2021-22 school year as a ninth grader and previously served as an assistant editor. Her favorite story she has written is a profile on retiring P.E. teacher Terri Greene. Outside of journalism, she is an editor for the InFlame Journal of History and Economics and the Renaissance literary magazine. She enjoys running, writing and reading any history book she can find. Awards: 2023 Journalism Education Association National Student Media Contests, San Francisco convention: Superior, editorial writing
Edward Park, Assistant Editor
Edward Park is a member of the Class of 2025 and serves as an assistant editor. He joined the journalism staff in the 2022-23 school year as a sophomore. Outside of journalism, Edward enjoys watching sports and cooking for his family.
Danny Aronsohn, Photographer
Danny Aronsohn is a photographer and a member of the Class of 2026. His favorite part of photojournalism is taking photos of his friends in the Lab community. Outside of photojournalism, Danny enjoys playing soccer and is interested in producing beats on SoundCloud.  

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