Currently viewing the tag: "D. Ryan Lynch"

Monday, June 15, 2015 4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Moderator: Alison Hicks, University of Colorado, Boulder
Rapporteur: Melissa Gasparotto, Rutgers University

Sara Levinson, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Following the Clues and Getting Help from your Friends: Creating a Catalog Record for an Item Written Almost Entirely in a Language You Don’t Understand

Leif Adelson, Books from Mexico
Reflections on Why There Are So Few Digital Format Academic Titles in Mexico

Jesus Alonso-Regalado, SUNY/Albany
Crowdfunding and Collection Development

Lisa Gardinier, University of Iowa
Conversaciones con fanzineros: Collecting Zines in Latin America

D Ryan Lynch, Knox College
US LIbraries for Beginners: Library Instruction for ESOL students

Jorge Matos, Hostos Community College/CUNY
Latino Librarianship in a Predominately Latino Community College: Thoughts form a New Junior Faculty.

Ana Ramirez Luhrs, Lafayette College
Crossing the Border: Librarians in the Classroom Beyond Information Literacy

David Woken, University of Oregon
Human Rights and Genocide: Leveraging Academic Library Resources to Support Secondary Education

Sara Levinson, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Following the Clues and Getting Help from your Friends: Creating a Catalog
Record for an Item Written Almost Entirely in a Language You Don’t Understand

Building off of last year’s presentation on correcting and enhancing OCLC records, Levinson spoke about collaboration as a solution. In the previous year’s presentation she had used a problematic MARC record for an illustrated story demonstrating that the language was problematic and format was inaccurate. She was pretty sure it was a Mayan language but not sure which one. After returning from that conference, Levinson was contacted by another SALALM member, Ellen Jaramillo, who suggested a possible dialect, Tzotzil Maya, and developed a partial translation of title. Jaramillo found Princeton’s institutional record for the same item which somehow is not in OCLC. It’s also partially in Spanish. In that record, a proper name was mentioned and there was an authority file for him and he turned out to be a Tzotzil religious leader.  Levinson edited the OCLC record and made changes to Princeton’s record, adding a “comics and graphic novels” heading and deleting an old incorrect heading for Huitzil readers. The final takeaway is that OCLC is only as good as the information that member institutions contribute to it and cooperation is key to the process.

Leif Adelson, Books from Mexico
Reflections on Why There Are So Few Digital Format Academic Titles in Mexico

Adelson noted that Mexican academic institutions produce the overwhelming majority of Mexican academic titles. There are independent houses that publish with academic publishing houses, too, but this is a small portion of production (less than 10% estimate by Adelson). There are other potential sources for digital publishing – author self publishing, small publishing outfits, NGOs, etc., but they lack the impetus and wherewithal to intervene in publishing digital monographs. Squeezed between forces, content producers must publish for academic stature while income pressures producers to make their writings available digitally. Also international electronic distributors approach publishers and offer money to publish those products on their format. But presses believe they should distribute publicly funded research for free. All are poorly equipped to conduct a cost benefits analysis. Given that this is a new field, it’s hard to calculate profit potential from free digital publications. Many academic publishers have been shielded from market pressures and don’t know how to transition to profit seeking digital publishing.

Many presses want to distribute in this way but rights management and technical platform considerations make things more complicated; plus, these conversations are slower to get moving in Mexico. Additionally, institutional academic publishers have a long history of non-bottom-line mentality. Generating revenue or being economically stable has not been part of equation.

There are opportunities (e.g., aggressive strategies in digitizing, publishing and publicizing through vendors) that could help alleviate economic pressures. Additionally, the government could issue standards for digital publications or create a national server for these digitized monographs. These things could put Mexico in front of today’s digital academic publishing trends.

Jesus Alonso-Regalado, SUNY/Albany
Crowdfunding and Collection Development

Alonso-Regalado made the distinction between this topic and fundraising for library-generated library projects. His project deals with generating revenue to fund projects outside the library (projects by authors or filmmakers that result in books or videos): the library helping to create items that they then collect. He sees this as a potential for libraries to be co-creators in the production of knowledge. He advocated for crowdfunding for creation of materials as a valid method of collection development, as many of these crowdfunding projects might not happen without library support.

How can librarians do this? Support may be provided via Kickstarter, Indiegogo, USEED. Alonso-Regalado uses same collection development criteria with these projects as he would for other more traditional collection development decisions, such as reading project description, etc. Many times, supporting the crowdfunded project is the only way you can acquire these limited edition items, but any library, large or small, can afford this. However, fund management and structure might be problematic. In Kickstarter you put in chargecard but you don’t pay until the project reaches its goal. But what if that creator never finishes the item/project.? The creator must work that out with funders. You can advocate for these things even if you’re not doing it directly, and have someone else back the project and donate the resulting items.

Alonso-Regalado talked about four projects he had backed in this way.The book Invisible Immigrants Spaniards in the US 1868-1945, and the films Papa Machete, Memories of Guantanamo, and Save our film: la ciudad.

Lisa Gardinier, University of Iowa
Conversaciones con fanzineros: Collecting Zines in Latin America

Gardinier had been collecting zines from Latin America for last 3 years. Zines are generally self-published with intention of being serial, and they are often personal.

The acquisition of zines typically requires an informal method of collecting. For example, attending “La Otra FIL” in Guadalajara, which happens in conjunction with the larger book fair, but at another site. Sometimes zines come to her in Iowa in the form of visiting artists who can either donate their own works or put her in touch with others. Social events can lead to collecting opportunities, and she has had lots of conversations with fanzineros about why she was collecting and the value of exerting effort to build these collections. One of the most important parts of building a collection like this is building relationships, showing creators that people care and that this material is important. The work represents voices that are otherwise unheard and so these materials belong in an academic library. These materials are getting the same treatment as any other acquisition format. Since they’re inexpensive, budget is not much of a problem.

Q&A for first half of the panel
Jade Mischler of Tulane asked Alonso-Regalado how he finds out about these projects. Is he in Kickstarter searching, or does searching elsewhere lead him to Kickstarter? He answered that both were the case.

Daisy Dominguez of City College asked Alonso-Regalado if he had supported a project that was unsuccessful and how did that look to library administrators? He did back a project that ultimately failed but they tried again. His support of these projects was a proof of concept so he used his own money and donated books.

AJ Johnson of UT-Benson asked if Alonso-Regalado had looked into any music projects on Kickstarter. He answered that he hadn’t seen projects for Latin American music. He added that other platforms for crowdsourcing allow you to connect things to development office of the university. If your library doesn’t want to do it, you can try to convince your constituents to do it and donate toward the item.

Miguel Valladares of University of Virginia asked Gardinier if she was collecting zines from Spain? She answered yes, but unintentionaly. They’re very transnational She can find one country’s publications in another. For example Spanish anarchist zines from the late 90s are still floating around Latin America with prices in Pesetas. They get photocopied over and over and redistributed.

David Woken of University of Oregon noted that he had tried crowdfunding and backs a lot personally. People may present themselves well but there may be problems after the fact. For example, one video project on racism that he has personally backed is taking a long time and getting lots of criticism from other documentary makers for failing to secure proper permissions, You don’t know if the product will be made ethically. Alonso-Regalado responded that this is a question of trust and that if they fail it will affect their reputation. He added that he will alert SALALM members if/when he identifies other projects of interest.

D Ryan Lynch, Knox College
US LIbraries for Beginners: Library Instruction for ESOL students

How do you engage students in academic support resources at your college or university? How do you overcome perceived or real barriers preventing access to resources like the library or tutoring? Lynch is the library liaison for all non-departmental centers and offices (e.g., Center for Teaching and Learning, Global Studies) and spoke about involvement  with IELP (Intensive English Language Program) a two-week summer bridge program for international students who need extra language and writing skills to help them get a jump start before semester. This was the college’s very first summer bridge program, and part of the VPAA initiative to focus on retention and success. It was approved at the last minute so there was little time to prepare.

The ½ credit program consisted of six hours of English language and writing instruction each day for ten days. Instruction was delivered by Center for Teaching and Learning and peer writing tutors. The library provided 4 short sessions (two times each week of the program). The library sessions were scheduled for the end of the day and students were inevitably exhausted by the time they arrived. The goals for library sessions were to cover the physical space, the librarians, library resources including I-share, helping students understand the differences between types of information, where to look, and search strategies.

Lynch sought feedback on expectations, constructive criticism and information on student engagement with resources on campus, conducting six semi-structured interviews over 7-8 hours. When asked why they chose to participate in the program, most said they had gaps in English and/or lacked confidence. Some students wanted to get to know the town, some wanted to meet people and others wanted to get an edge. One student remarked that for “every international student no matter how well you are prepared you are still underprepared.”

Five out of six students had come to the reference desk and half had sent their friends to the desk. Every student had remembered every skill covered in the four library sessions. Five out of six had used tutoring and three had referred their friends. They sent their friends to people they were familiar with. All students were positive about the program, but they were a particularly highly motivated group and perhaps not representative. Lynch concluded that this was a nice model for helping less acculturated students become more acclimated to and more engaged with support.

Jorge Matos, Hostos Community College/CUNY
Latino Librarianship in a Predominately Latino Community College: Thoughts form a New Junior Faculty.

Matos began by presenting demographics of Hostos at a glance: 60% of students are Latino, and many are West Indian, as well. 65% are women, ¾ of students live in households earning less than $30k/year. Half are the first generation to attend college, and 1/3 continue on to 4 year institutions. The college serves lots of working mothers and other working students. These facts aren’t always obstacles and can sometimes add to the educational experience. Hostos was founded in 1968 through political pressure/advocacy, and located in old abandoned tire factory. There were no labs, pool, theater or gym. The 1975-7 Save Hostos campaign, in response to a decision to close the school and merge it with Bronx Community College, was a major turning point in the school’s history. Students, faculty and the community participated in mass demonstrations and engaged in civil disobedience. Supporters took over the Grand Concourse for a whole afternoon and brought classrooms into the street. In a strategy to bring national attention and establishment press to focus on the issue, they occupied the college for 20 days and the New York State Assembly eventually conceded to protests. These actions lead to the saving of the college and its continued development into what it is today. Hostos is a service-oriented institution and during his first year Matos participated in traditional reference and instruction, bilingual services and interaction with students and staff. Many students are recent immigrants. Sonia Sotomayor’s mother graduated from the college in the 70s with a degree in nursing.

Matos concluded with observations from first year. The current challenges include funding and space issues, library instruction and outreach to faculty (there is limited library staff), services to students with disabilities (modern adaptive technologies are a challenge), the increasing role of community college as site of workforce development and remedial education. Community colleges may be seen as an institution of last resort of lower income and communities of color or the disabled; this is a national trend.

Ana Ramirez Luhrs, Lafayette College
Crossing the Border: Librarians in the Classroom Beyond Information Literacy

Lafayette College is a small 4 year liberal arts college with approximately 2,000 students in Eastern Pennsylvania. The student body is mostly middle to upper-middle class and caucasian and Ramirez Luhrs serves as an advisor to Hispanic students at the college. She partnered with a LAS historian who works on Argentina and is interested in issues on gender and diversity on campus. They taught a class on these issues in 2013. The History 275 course was a 50/50 shared collaboration so Ramirez Luhrs was a teacher as well as embedded librarian. The course was organized around the themes “moving, mapping and telling.” Harvest of Empire was their main text and an anchor for all class discussions.
Ramirez Luhrs discussed the resources she used during each of the class themes.


This theme explored Mexican migrant workers in US (going back to Treaty of Guadalupe), and the Brazero program. It was important to use primary sources and teach visual literacy. The novel’s Mother Tongue and Drown were used for this theme. A few Latino students on campus self-selected for the class. Some were Dominican so the instructors added the Junot Diaz book to relate more.


Ramirez Luhrs is interested in the politics of Latino immigration, so the class took a deep look at the Census and its history of representation of Hispanics and Latinos through the years. She also used Pew Hispanic Center as a resource because she wanted to give students a chance to access good data that doesn’t need to be crunched too much.


Anzaldua’s Borderlands was used in support of this theme. Ramirez-Luhrs taught students how to use governmental primary sources to research law. Students completed an assignment on legislation and gave presentations on the immigration propositions in CA and AZ, which were current events at the time. Other texts used included Frontera, The Circuit and Becoming American.

Lafayette has special collections with related content, including protest posters on anti-immigration policies, and these are used as teaching materials.

Students produced a document: 10 Things Every US Citizen Should Know about Latin American Immigration. Her students held an “Immigration Week,” and worked to get the campus community to think about human rights issues and immigration.

The co-teaching partnership brought the students into the library and lead to them telling their friends. The other professor feld that better quality assignments were turned in. A further outcome was that the students no longer had barriers about going into the library.

David Woken, University of Oregon
Human Rights and Genocide: Leveraging Academic Library Resources to Support Secondary Education

Woken presented on his involvement in a workshop that the University of Oregon hosted for secondary teachers, about human rights and genocide prevention. Lectures exhibits and workshops were conducted for both faculty and high school teachers as part of a grant-funded program.

The program wanted to bring in lots of disciplines to help people think about how they might teach about human rights, and the teacher workshop topics included:

  • Gendered violence and impunity: Bangladesh and Mexico
  • Teaching human rights in Latin America: problems sources and methods (Woken co-taught with a professor in the History Department
  • Art and human rights in Latin America: pedagogical approaches
  • The thirst for human rights and the struggle for water in Latin America and Africa

Woken’s workshop covered repressive states of the Cold War era. He built an online guide for university instructors, modified to emphasize open access materials (primarily in English). Both he and the faculty co-teacher wanted students to seek a critical understanding of human rights. For example, Woken highlighted online truth and reconciliation documents, and how to think about the limitations of these documents.

Challenges and Lessons:

  • Provide useable information about a range of different cases while not oversimplifying
  • Avoid stereotyping
  • Deal with complexity of human rights as a concept itself
  • Provide teachers information that they can work with and giving them a positive example with which to work
  • Working within the restraints high school teachers face
  • Not stereotyping the teachers (It turned out that many of the teachers were Latinos, and Spanish language resources could have been useful)

Second Q&A

AJ Johnson, UT-Benson, asked Woken if there had been a follow-up from the teachers and if he had promoted the teaching of online primary sources. Woken answered that lots of contacts were made, which has been very positive. He added that there was a trend in common core to encourage primary source reading, and that he did discuss them, including the Archivo Policia Guatemala.

Moderator: D. Ryan Lynch (Knox College)
Rapporteur: David Woken (University of Oregon)

Eduardo A. Ortiz, Utah State University
Cache Valley Utah Latino Voices and History

Fahina Tavake-Pasi, National Tongan American Society
Pacific Islanders: Our Past, Key to a Healthier Future

Leslie G. Kelen, Center for Documentary Expression and Art
Documentary and Ethnic Identity: Challenges and Possibilities

D. Ryan Lynch, Knox College
Strange Bedfellows: How a Science Museum, a State Agency, and Local Organizers Made It Possible to Re-Write Rochester, New York’s History

Eduardo A. Ortiz presented “Cache Valley Utah Latino Voices and History,” about the Latino Voice Project.  The project began interviewing people in the Hispanic/Latino community of Cache Valley in 2007.  In 2012 Ortiz reviewed those interviews and pointed out that the different experiences of newer and younger immigrants, people who came to U.S. young, and those who have immigrant parents need to be noted, so they interviewed seven Cache Valley high school students and conducted focus groups with his students at Utah State.

In the 1980s Cache Valley was 1.2% “Spanish-language origin”, with the population growing from 150 to 1600 people (2.4%) in the 20 years between 1970 and 1990, and then tripling by 2000 to 5700 (6.3%).  This change was in part due to the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act as well as immigrants moving from “gateway” areas like New York, Texas, California, or Florida to other parts of the country.  Cache Valley’s largest industry is education (Utah State the largest employer), with some manufacturing and agricultural work.

By 2010 Cache Valley was 10% Hispanic/Latino (about 11,000 people), the majority Mexican in origin (about 8%).  In 1970, 42% Cache Valley’s Hispanic/Latino population over 25 years old had some college-education, compared to 52% in 1980, and back down to 42% in 1990.  This then dropped precipitously down to 20% in 2000, with women educated in much smaller numbers than men, though the percentage of college-educated Hispanics/Latinos was back up again in 2010.  The Hispanic/Latino population in Cache Valley was majority male in 1970, but by 2010 the gender gap had decreased greatly.  Currently Cache Valley’s Hispanic/Latino community’s median age is 21 years old (vs. 40 nationwide, 30 in Utah, and 26 among Cache Valley’ white population).  Employment rates of Cache Valley’s white and Hispanic/Latino populations are similar, but the poverty rate is higher among the Hispanic/Latino population.

Interviewees note they are often looked down on as “illegals,” but when they point to their own education or personal achievements (“I am an engineer” or “I am finishing my Master’s”), that treatment changes.  They also report more positive interactions in their churches.  Some first-generation immigrants seek to “integrate” with the white population’s cultural norms.  However, immigration status is a factor in this.  A major 2006 immigration raid swept up about 150 people and had serious emotional, psychological, social, and economic effects on Latina/o youth.  The second generation feels “stronger” but still wants to stay part of their family networks and not lose touch with their origins.  They are often responsible to care for siblings and extended families.  The Hispanic/Latino community in Cache Valley faces many challenges that should not be generalized and need to be understood within context.  They need help to overcome social, psychological, emotional, and political challenges they face.

Fahina Tavake-Pasi presented “Pacific Islanders: Our Past, Key to a Healthier Future,” about an oral history project that collected stories among Utah’s sizable Pacific Islander (specifically Tongan and Samoan) community, touching on public health issues in addition to community history.  The Pacific Islands consist of three areas, Micronesia, Melanesia, and Polynesia, which are united and communicate with each other via the ocean.  Pacific islanders are “champions in traveling the oceans,” for centuries living and working with nature to gather food from the ocean and farm limited lands with men and children working outside the home while women produce household goods (homes, baskets, blankets, etc.) from bark and leaves.  The first European arrivals noted a remarkably strong, healthy population with strong family ties.

Pacific islanders began arriving in Utah in the late 1800s after Mormon missions came to the Pacific. Many were brought to build the Mormon temple in Utah in the early 20th Century, and the first LDS temple outside the continental U.S. was in Hawaii.  The biggest influx of Pacific Islanders to Utah began in the 1970s-1980s and continues to the present.  Utah now has 26,000 Pacific Islanders, mostly (65-70%) in Salt Lake City County, who make up only 1% of the state’s population, but per capita are one of largest Pacific Islander communities in the U.S. They have been “westernized” in Utah, a process making its way back to the islands, with less working on the lands and oceans, relatives sending western remissions, etc.  Today, 7 of the 10 most obese populations in the world are in the Pacific Islands.  In Utah, Pacific Islanders have the highest obesity and infant mortality rates and high incidents of diabetes, strokes, and heart disease.  Many view doctors and health care as a last resort.  They face challenges with language and navigating the system, as well as some cultural norms that discourage engagement with the health care system.  They have high dropout rates among youth (24% in Utah) and high incarceration rates.  In the Salt Lake City area they reported 4000 unique ER cases among Pacific Islanders, vs. only 400 in the Federal Health Clinic system in all of Utah.

Her oral history project surveyed Utah Pacific Islanders about eating habits and body image.  They found both men and women prefer bigger sizes and consider skinny people unhealthy.  A diet traditionally dominated by vegetables and fruit has been replaced with a meat-heavy one.  Physical activity rates are low while food is considered important to connecting with others.  She noted higher obesity rates among older and married respondents, with 60-70% of Pacific Islanders overweight or obese, but almost 50% see themselves as only slightly overweight, while among those who are underweight 23-26% see themselves as fat.  Only 47% reported adequate physical activity versus 23% in Utah as a whole, and women had even worse rates because of worries about causing themselves injury and preserving their beauty.  There was also much higher “screen time” among Pacific Islander youth vs. Utah youth in general.  Food consumption was close to the Utah norm, but Pacific Islander rates were still higher.

These interviews helped to identify ways to address this health situation by increasing physical activity and reducing consumption of sugary drinks.  They started a program to get women to go on a walk while at the tennis court instead of sitting around watching the men play.  They are also trying to use community spaces like churches and schools for healthy activities (free Zumba, family health classes, athletic tournaments).  When they aimed these activities at men, the men showed up alone, but when they involved women the whole family got involved.

Leslie G. Kelen presented “Documentary and Ethnic Identity: Challenges and Possibilities.”  The Center for Documentary Expression and Art is an independent nonprofit organization based in the Salt Lake Valley that joined with the Utah Coalition of La Raza in 2010 to begin a year-long training program for Utah high school-aged Chicano/Latino youth to use oral histories and photos to document Chicano/Latino leaders.  CDEA has done projects on multicultural Utah for over 30 years, and this project aimed at connecting youth with older Chicano/Latino generations.

CDEA treats oral histories as personal stories that bring memories into public, document stories that may not be known otherwise, and break social barriers to show youth they can succeed.  Oral histories help break down barriers between generations, model storytelling, and get youth to think about their own stories.  Kelen then demonstrated CDEA’s oral history website, which includes general information and a bibliography followed by an interview section. He then played with an interview with Andrew Valdez, first Hispano-Latino judge appointed to the bench in Utah, produced by Kelen’s son.  Valdez spoke about his mom, who worked full time and encouraged him to pursue an education.  She came from a New Mexico Hispanic community, refused to accept welfare, and encouraged a strong work ethic in him.  Next he played an interview with Ruby Chacón, a Salt Lake City artist who discusses how her work as an artist was shaped by her identity and the way Chicano/Latino people are (mis)represented in media.  Finally he showed several films of student interviewers speaking about their own lives.  They discussed challenges of crossing the border alone, losing family members abroad, fearing for their own safety due to their immigration status, and dealing with the deportation of their parents, but also spoke about their dreams and aspirations for the future, to succeed here in the U.S.

D. Ryan Lynch presented “Strange Bedfellows: How a Science Museum, a State Agency, and Local Organizers Made It Possible to Re-Write Rochester, New York’s History,” about the archival collection of Juan Padilla, a Puerto Rican man who lived in Rochester since 1963, housed at the Rochester Museum and Science Center, a youth-oriented science museum which also houses a history collection and a small library.  This archive touches on race relations, education, and neighborhood history.   Brought to upstate New York as a farmworker after World War II, like many Padilla stayed after the end harvest.  The farm workers also included African American migrants who came up from the South.  An atmosphere of racial tension in Rochester resulted in the 1964 Rochester race riot, after which Juan got involved in Black Power organizations and later War on Poverty organizations.  His first job was to recruit Hispanics into a War on Poverty-funded group.  In the 1970s he moved into community organizing, working to preserve the coherence of the local Puerto Rican community.  Health care was a major focus of his work.  His WEDGE organization trained health care workers in bilingual communication and reiterated that they could not rely on janitors or food service workers to translate Spanish for Puerto Rican patients.  He moved on to work with local schools and helped found a major upstate New York Puerto Rican youth leadership organization.  By the 1990s he had boxes of information on his work, but no one seemed to care.

In the year 2000 the Documentary Heritage Project (DHP) used the New York state archives catalog and research library information to reach out through small local grants to bring local collections into archives under flexible standards.  This process brought Juan’s collection and a couple of others to the Rochester Museum and Science Center where long-active archivist Lia Kemp founded Rochester’s Latino Archives Project in 2003.  This brought a community organization and state agency’s funding together to collaboratively building this archive.  They also edited a special edition of Rochester Magazine that highlighted stories from these collections, documenting stories and events that show the histories of Puerto Ricans and the Black Power movement in upstate New York.  It also helps redefine the history of Rochester beyond one of a post-industrial city with a purely black or white population.


Peter Johnson (Princeton) asked the first three speakers how they see the communities they discuss being influenced by the Mormon presence in Utah, and how they differ from immigrant communities elsewhere.  Tavake-Pasi responded that she is a Mormon, though the Pacific Islander population is religiously diverse (includes Methodists, Catholics, Baha’i, many more), and she finds the issues she identified are the results of families or values, not their religion.  Johnson followed up asking if Mormons statistically are no different than non-Mormons, in terms of teen pregnancy rates or other social indicators.  Tavake-Pasi said they were, that people have studied Mormon and Methodist populations among Tonga youth and the main difference is that Mormons are more likely to speak English vs. Tongan.  Kelen responded to Johnson that the Mormon influence in the Latina/o community is largely political because of Mormon political conservatism.  That said, Salt Lake City is exceptional (50-60% Democrat, largely non-Mormon).  Tavake-Pasi added that she feels the racism in Utah is worse than in other areas.  Ortiz said that in Cache Valley about 1500 Hispanic/Latino people are LDS, and he finds it hard to generalize quantitatively, but he thinks it is important socially in shaping integration and education.  He thinks the second generation may have an easier time and have more tools for integration, but this needs more study.

Melissa Gasparotto (Rutgers) asked Kelen how he got such open conversations from youth.  Kelen responded that part of it was the interview process with elders, where they saw these people tell really painful stories.  For example, Judge Valdez told of being bullied by other kids, and how his brother had encouraged him to fight his tormentors, but he ultimately chose not to.  They saw respected and successful people dealing with serious challenges, and now wanted to reflect on that and tell their own stories.  Ortiz then added that the interview process is important, that you need to work to build trust with youth to give them a basis to tell and share their stories, which can be built in conversations with elders from their communities.  Kelen then added that adults modeled to youth how to tell their own stories.