Created in 1973, La Casa/Latino Cultural Center is a vital connection between Indiana University and the Hispanic and Latine communities. Reporting to the Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, the center fosters students' sense of belonging and pride, providing resources and support to help with their academic, personal, leadership and social development needs.
This year, La Casa will celebrate its 50th anniversary.
“La Casa is an important part of IU Bloomington’s work to create learning spaces that allow students to celebrate and study diversity, cultural heritage, history and traditions,” says James C. Wimbush, vice president for the Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion and Johnson Chair for Diversity and Leadership. “This 50th anniversary is a monumental milestone. The work done through La Casa has made a key difference in the college journeys of thousands of Latine students—and will continue to do so for new generations in the years ahead.”
Lillian Casillas, who serves as director of the center, agrees. “La Casa has long been a welcoming, unifying gathering space where diversity is explored, recognized and celebrated on the IU Bloomington campus. Just as important, it represents a place where everyone in the community is welcomed and can find a sense of belonging,” she adds.
To commemorate this significant occasion, a special 50th Anniversary Reunion Weekend is planned for October 13-15, 2023, in Bloomington.
Various events scheduled throughout the weekend include a Welcome Reception on Friday, October 13, followed by the “La Casa History Pop-up Exhibit” that documents 50 years of defining moments in the history of the Latino Cultural Center. Attendees are invited to share their memories about these formative years by completing a questionnaire and sending it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: Only submissions made before October 6 will be included in a binder as part of the exhibit. Please go to the schedule of events page for more information.
Additional activities scheduled for Friday include “Salsa Night with the Son del Caribe Orchestra.”
On Saturday, October 14, a breakfast will take place titled “IU 2044: Championing Latine Student Success.” As part of this gathering, education experts will discuss best practices to accelerate Latine student success. The dialogue will be followed with another session in which faculty members share their research, insights and strategies to support Latine students better.
Additional scheduled activities on Saturday include a digital archive project on La Casa, a panel discussion with alumni and current students on the past, present and future of the center, networking opportunities, a campus tour and cocktail hour.
The day will culminate with a banquet that is open to the public. Friends, family and guests are welcome to join the celebration. Registration is required.
The 50th Anniversary Reunion Weekend concludes on Sunday, October 15, with a continental breakfast at La Casa.