Stated within the University of San Diego mission statement are the words, “creating a diverse and inclusive community.” While USD is committed to advancing academic excellence, expanding liberal and professional knowledge and preparing leaders dedicated to ethical conduct and compassionate service, celebrating occasions such as Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15) with pride and respect is testament to its mission.
That’s why USD, in collaboration with longtime media partner Entravision, is a proud sponsor of Hispanic Heritage Month on Univision, Telemundo, Mundo Fox and UniMas. Now through Oct. 12, these four networks will run a series of 60-second vignettes that highlight a pair of USD engineering alumni as well as the university’s Mariachi Ensemble program. A new ad will run one week at a time with the three rotating on the fourth week.
“The University of San Diego is proud to be sponsoring Hispanic Heritage Month by working with Entravision to recognize an outstanding cultural program such as the USD Mariachi Ensemble and profile two of our exemplary alumni,” said Coreen Petti, associate vice president for Marketing and Strategic Partnerships.
The first feature — which is currently being shown — highlights USD lecturer Serafin Paredes, director of the USD Mariachi Ensemble, and student performers. The program has been a welcome addition to USD’s Department of Music in its short existence. The group has performed at university events, special occasions as well as through the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Music. The Mariachi Ensemble performed during last year’s Mariachi San Diego showcase on campus, concerts in USD’s Shiley Theatre, Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice Theatre, and at the Latina/o and Chicana/o Graduation Celebration in May. The vignette gives Paredes and student members the chance to explain their passion for mariachi.
Pineda, a first-generation college graduate, serves the local community as director of college preparation for the Barrio Logan College Initiative. The BS/BA Electrical Engineering graduate’s work is focused on helping young students realize the importance of attending — and graduating from college — as well as working with parents to help them realize the importance of their involvement in their child’s educational pursuit. His work with the BLCI makes him a shining alumni example of USD’s Ashoka U Changemaker Campus designation.
Gallego Perez, a double alumnus with a BS/BA dual degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering and a Master of Science in Executive Leadership, is the general manager of Pagasa Pasta and Molino El Rosal. Both are family-owned and operated enterprises whose products — pastas, cookies and flour — are sold throughout Mexico, United States and Canada. Gallego Perez, one of three family members in the business with USD degrees, discusses how his USD education is applied to the businesses and his thoughts about sustainability and about the new Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering.
— Ryan T. Blystone