Selgago art
Hostos joined Carnegie Hall’s citywide Hall's citywide festival “Migrations: the Making of America” on April 4 through a pair of powerful back-to-back lectures.

Titled “Undocumented and Unafraid: The Power of Creative Expression,” the event featured Dan-el Padilla Peralta, a professor of Classics at Princeton University and the author of the memoir, Undocumented: A Dominican Boy’s Odyssey from a Homeless Shelter to the Ivy League, and Julio Salgado, co-founder of and project manager for CultureStrike.

While the duo presented separately, they both educated, entertained and enlightened the audience in the Longwood Art Gallery through personal stories that humanized issues surrounding migration and the lives of immigrants in the United States.

Dan-el Padilla PeraltaPeralta, who is born to Dominican parents who first came legally to the United States but grew up undocumented, opened up by reading from his memoir, which documents his incredible odyssey. Spending part of his youth in homeless and also in an Emergency Relocation Center, Peralta remained committed to his education. This determination caught the eye of people who wanted to help and he eventually made it into the Collegiate, a private boys K-12 school in NYC, and then to Princeton University. Using his personal story, Peralta continually stressed how important education was for him, and for all those dealing with the trials, tribulations and obstacles being an immigrant in the United States can bring. Similarly, two Hostos alumna, hailing from Mexico and Honduras respectively, shared their trials as undocumented immigrants and the key role of education in their lives.

Julio SalgadoSalgado, an undocumented, queer activist who is committed to bringing positive change through his visual art, presented several pieces of art during a sometimes serious and sometimes funny lecture. Dealing with themes such as the DREAM Act, pop culture, and other aspects of society, Salgado discussed his life growing up as a gay Mexican-born artist who grew up in California. His desire to put a human face on the immigration issue and connect with other people has driven him get to the “human element” when talking about undocumented people, the queer community, and the world around us.

This important two-part event was co-organized by the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Unit (professor Inmaculada Lara-Bonilla), the Hostos Center for Arts and Culture (professor Charles Rice Gonzalez), and the Hostos Dream Team (students and alumni).