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April 11, 2013

Host: José Cárdenas

Hermanas Conference

  |   Video
  • Luz Osuna talks about a project that Intel Employees and Maricopa County Community Colleges recently hosted called "Hermanas Conference" that discusses high skilled opportunities for young Latinas.
  • Luz Osuna
Category: Community   |   Keywords: technology, community, Maricop Community Colleges, Hermanas, ,

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Jose Cardenas: Arizona is directly tied to Mexico to through business, travel and culture the new president signed a major reform plan that the Mexican government says will bring more opportunities for American companies to do business south of the border AZPM producer reports.

SOT: Enrique until . In his first month in office, he signed a pact for Mexico that brought together the country's three major political parties, something that had never been done before.

Now, what this means is that the gridlock that we have been having in the previous administrations has been dealt with.

Alfonso De Alba, deputy consul at the Mexican consulate in Tucson, says the agreement has reforms. Every one has a set timeline for when the Mexican president wants to see changes. The plan lays out improvements to job growth, transparency in corruption, civil rights an security.

The thing that this government has chosen to do is not give the security issues the highest priority given that that is being dealt with. We'll have a new national police force, the state police forces are going to be paired up so that everybody has the same procedures and the rule of law can be applied evenly. We'll also change the court systems. The real focus that this government wants to do and something that is seen both in California and Texas, and Arizona, is that the economic links between the U.S. and Mexico are just vital. Economic growth is going to drive down violence when we have opportunities for young people, when we have trade going through fluently, then opportunities are going to make the violence go down as they do in all developed countries.

he says some of the changes in Mexico's economy will directly affect Arizona businesses.

First of all we'll have banking reform in Mexico where private commercial banks will be able to lend more easily. There's going to be to the manufacturing sector in Nogales right across the border but also the rest of Sonora and the rest of Mexico.

he says the changes in manufacturing will bring opportunities for Americans who want to invest in Mexico.

What's really going to be important for Americans given the situation of the economy here is that Mexico's really picking up speed. We're going through an economic renaissance now given that we're a lot closer than some other companies in Asia and that we have culture of understanding between our nations, it's just really makes sense that manufacturing can go on in Mexico with American designers and also producers. One has to take into account that a lot of the production actually most of the production in Mexico is made with American parts, so symbiotic relationship. As the Mexican economy picks up there's going to be a lot of opportunities.

most people in Mexico will be affected by these reforms in one way or another. Arizona residents will also have a role as Mexico evolves.

we're going to have a lot more dialogue with people here in southern Arizona. We have a very fruitful relationship with the government here and we're going to be looking to expand our activities to deal with the business community in southern Arizona, try to make the matches that need to be made so that people from here have counterparts in Mexico and that dialogue is increased.

This is something U.S. officials also want to promote. Tucson mayor Jonathan Rothschild has been working with Mexican officials to strengthen economic ties and build new opportunities.

Jose Cardenas: Intel employees and Maricopa County community college recently hosted the her manas conference designed to introduce young Latino girls to stem careers and majors in the fun and interactive way. Joining me is Luz Osuna. She has been volunteering at the conference for several years. Welcome to "Horizonte."

Luz Osuna: Thank you.

Jose Cardenas: that's quite a title that you have. If you don't mind we'll refer to you as an engineer.

Luz Osuna: yes.

Jose Cardenas: I take it other people from Intel who have participated, they are professionals trying to set an example.

Luz Osuna: Correct. The conference was actually started by a group of women, Intel employees, concerned about the lack of representation of minority women in the areas of stem, which is science, technology, engineering and mathematics. They created this conference to introduce girls to stem, and encourage them to go to college in these fields.

Jose Cardenas: When did that start?

Luz Osuna: In 2005 . That was when we -- Intel held the first conference.

Jose Cardenas: We have heard a lot about stem and the importance of those activities. There are people who have been focused on this. It certainly is an issue for minorities, trying to get them interested in these areas. One of the things I would like you to comment on is whether you think it's working and what's the best way to get them involved in these kinds of activities.

Luz Osuna: I think that the best way is to reach out to students at a young age. Middle school, starting in middle school age, and we feel that it is working because 65% of the girls who attend the conference go on to enroll at community college.

Jose Cardenas: You do this more than once a year, this last one was kind of for the west valley high schools.

Luz Osuna: Right.

Jose Cardenas: you do others for middle schools and something for the east valley.

Luz Osuna: yes, we try to separate -- we separate the conference into two grade levels, middle and high schoolgirls, then we do two in the Gilbert area, two in star mountain. This year we expanded to south mountain community college.

Jose Cardenas: let's talk about what goes on at these conferences. As we described it in the introduction there's some fun activities but some very meaningful ones exposing these young women to the opportunities.

Luz Osuna: Yes, the girls get to do fun and engaging engineering activities.

Jose Cardenas: We have some pictures on the screen now of some of the attendees.

Luz Osuna: yes. They get to build things like a boat or an airplane or bridge. The workshops are meant for them to be creative and be hands on so a lot of times girls think that engineering and math and science is boring, and it's not that way at all. It requires a lot of creativity. That's the message we want to get across to the girls. They also get to interact with professional Latinas in the fields of science and engineering and math through the Latina town hall, which is session informal where the girls ask questions about anything they want.

Jose Cardenas: How many people do you typically get?

Luz Osuna: In the panel we usually have four to five people in the panel. We try to make it small so it feels more like a family, like a conversation with the girls. So that they feel comfortable to ask the questions they want to ask.

Jose Cardenas: And you said they get to ask anything they want. What's a typical question?

Luz Osuna: They ask things like what do you do as an engineer, how can I pay for college, what do you like about your job, they ask what challenges have you faced.

Jose Cardenas: Is there any discussion of what some of the other guests we have had on that talk about special challenges for Latinas. Some of them are cultural. Parents who at a minimum don't want their daughters moving out of the house until they are married. They may support them for higher education, but even that sometimes becomes an issue.

Luz Osuna: Yes. I think there's a perception that stem fields are not for women or are just for men, and they are not definitely but the perception that they are nontraditional for Latinas. When I talk to the girls and ask what do they want to be when they grow up they usually say things like doctors and lawyers. While those are great, we need more Latinas in engineering because our country has a shortage ever engineers. Stem fields are viable options for girls, you know, they are not just for men. They are careers that are very rewarding and very fun. So it's just another option that they are usually not aware of.

Jose Cardenas: How readily do you think they can relate to people like you who have been through it. You've been to ASU, you got your degree, working at Intel. Do they think they can communicate with you in a way that might be different than if it was a white anglo man?

Luz Osuna: That is the purpose of the town hall. We try to get Latina women who are engineers so they can relate. I think they are understand a lot of the challenges that some of us face. They deal with their fathers and mothers not being encouraging of their interests in math or science or other members of their community saying just do something else. That's too hard for you. So we tried to make it so that they can relate. I think it's been successful--

Jose Cardenas: Do you share some of your own personal stories?

Luz Osuna: That's right.

Jose Cardenas: is there anything about your own background you think particularly relates to the young women you're seeing?

Luz Osuna: I think that when I graduated high school I was the first in my family. Not a lot of people from high school went to college. The ones who did didn't go into engineering. So when I got to college I was by myself. I needed a network of people to relate to. When I got to my classes I found I was first of all one of three girls and then probably the only Latina in the class. Yes, I try to share that with the girls and tell them it's not impossible. I finished in engineering. Now I'm working at Intel. It's a great job.

Jose Cardenas: it's a great story, a great inspiration. Thank you for sharing that story and the work you're doing with us on "Horizonte."

Luz Osuna: Thank you.

Pope Francis

  |   Video
  • A discussion with Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Phoenix Eduardo A. Nevares about newly elected Pope Francis.
  • Eduardo A. Nevares - Auxiliary Bishop, Diocese of Phoenix
Keywords: religion, pope francis, pope, bishop, ,

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Jose Cardenas: Thank you for joining us. Phoenix Catholics expressed joy when they learned Pope Francis is the first Latin American and the first Jesuit to lead the church. He is also the first to take the name Francis, in honor of saint Francis of Assisi. Joining me tonight to discuss his thoughts about pope Francis is the auxiliary bishop of the Diocese of Phoenix, Eduardo Bishop, welcome back to "Horizonte." It's been a couple of years. That was shortly after you joined this diocese. It's good to have you back.

Eduardo Nevares: thank you.

Jose Cardenas: As we mentioned in the introduction, this Pope's selection was greeted with joy. That's not unusual whenever you have a new Pope. But this seems to be different. There is a genuine sense of hopefulness that is greater than usual. What's your sense?

Eduardo Nevares: Several points that you have already mentioned. This is a historic moment. The first time in 600 years that a Pope has resigned the office. The first time in the history of the church that a Jesuit has been elected Pope. The first time in history that the Pope has taken the name Francis, and the first time in history that a Pope has come from Latin America. These are historic times that we're witnessing. I think for all of that reality, it makes people understand that the spirit is alive and moving very powerfully during our day.

Jose Cardenas: There seems to be in addition to all of that a real personal connection to this Pope.

Eduardo Nevares: Yes. Well, if you remember, one of the very first things that the Pope did was from his balcony he asked for the blessing of the people. Instead of him giving the blessing he has first the blessing of the people, and for their prayer. So the humility of the man, the simplicity of the man, and the warmth of the man I think is what really is attracting many people to get to know him and want to know him more and more and come to respect him and love him more and more.

Jose Cardenas: Among the issues hey to deal with are the scandal, banking scandals, the scandals regarding sexual abuse. But the bureaucracy itself. There have been recent reports about difficulties there. All of the things that make him seem so much to be a man of the people, how are they going to help him? Will they be a hindrance to dealing with some pretty entrenched bureaucrats in the courier?

Eduardo Nevares: They may be entrenched but he is the Pope, so he is the boss. I think in his own Archdiocese of Buenos Aires he has proven himself to be a good manager capable of making difficult decisions, so we're confident he will be able to manage the old bureaucrats that might exist in the Vatican.

Jose Cardenas: We have already seen some examples of that humility and personal style that you talked about. What do you think will be the first major initiative that we'll see coming from this Pope?

Eduardo Nevares: One of the first might be a very different style which means he has reiterated several times that he wants to be the bishop of Rome. Even though that has always been his title, at least one of his titles, I think he's emphasized he in his mind wants to take care of his people as any bishop wants to take care of their people assigned or committed to their pastoral care. So he's reiterated over and over that he comes to be the bishop of Rome. So I can see as we have already saw at the holy Thursday mass, when he went to visit the young people in the prison, and I can see him doing that more, visiting prisoners, visiting sick people, visiting the elderly shut-ins, visiting the crippled children. Any pastoral activity that any bishop would do in his own diocese. So I think that that's going to be a very different style that we'll see in Pope Francis.

Jose Cardenas: what does it mean for Catholics in the rest of the world, that the fact that he's taking care of the people who basically are in his charge, immediate charge? What significance does that have here?

Eduardo Nevares: I think that again, they say that a picture is worth 1000 words. For just seeing that beautifully con of Pope Francis kissing the feet of the prisoner and hugging the little crippled child and embracing the crippled gentleman in the Piazza is going to challenge each of us Catholics around the world, but especially then here in Arizona to follow his good example. It will challenge us to reflect upon gospel values. The old adage, what would Jesus do -- so simple. So basic, so profound. Yet I think that's great challenge that Pope Francis will bring to the Catholic population, hopefully to the world. A spirit of Christ based on gospel values.

Jose Cardenas: One of the challenges you'll be dealing with actually an opportunity in this year of faith, which I want you to explain to our audience, but is leading a pilgrimage to Mexico. Let's talk about the year of faith. What is that?

Eduardo Nevares: Pope emeritus Benedict --

Jose Cardenas: Does it sound funny to say that?

Eduardo Nevares: I have to think about it. I have to think about it. Last October asked for a year of faith because it was the 50th anniversary of the beginning of the second Vatican council. The 20th anniversary of the promulgation of the new catechism of the Catholic church. He just wanted every Catholic to get back it their roots, get back to the gospel. The Vatican documents, the catechism. Get back to their faith. Sometimes we are living in a secularist society. We're living in a society that tries to quiet the church, tries to diminish the influence of the church. And tries to convince the young people that the church is passe. I think Pope Benedict wanted first everyone to have a spiritual renewal. Not just to go through the motion, not just to follow the practice in a traditional rote way, but really challenge each and every person to have a personal encounter with the risen Christ.

Jose Cardenas: And as I understand it, this diocese has decided to pursue that renewal with a pilgrimage to Mexico that you’re going to lead. Tell us about that.

Eduardo Nevares: Bishop Olmsted asked for this pilgrimage to be led this follow October 7th through 14th precisely to visit our lady of Guadaloupe in Mexico City. The reason for that is because our lady of Guadaloupe is a patroness of our diocese. Our bishop wants everyone the opportunity to go and get to know our lady better. Go to her shrine to pray for the needs of their individual families and for the needs of our diocese. Our lady of Guadaloupe at the apparition, 1531, to St. Juan Diego said she wanted all of her children to come and pray to her and be in her presence. She is our mother. She is our intercessor. She wants all of us to go and bring her our heavy an burdened hearts. We're going to organize a pilgrimage to the shrine of our lady of Guadaloupe and we're going to be there a whole day in prayer. I hope to celebrate mass at the high altar directly under the image of our lady, which is over 450 years old. It's a living image. She is alive and she's there for us today.

Jose Cardenas: She is a particular significant to Mexicans and to Hispanics in this country. What does she say, though, is there any concern that this pilgrimage -- other groups in the church, in the Diocese?

Eduardo Nevares: It's important that everybody understand that blessed John Paul II named her the empress of the Americas because our lady wants to be all of our mother. We know she is the mother of God and she's our mother, given to us by Jesus on the cross. So unfortunately for years she has been seen as the Mexican Virgin or the Virgin of the Mexicans. No, even though she did appear in Mexico, if you look at Mexico City, it really is the center of the American continent. That goes from Canada, U.S. and Mexico, central and South America. So Mexico City is at the center of that entire continent. So our lady is known as the empress of the Americas.

Jose Cardenas: You'll be going to Mexico City, going to the Basilica, but this is an eight-day seven-night trip appeared you'll be going to other parts of Mexico, in particular places that have particular relevance to later historical development in Mexico, which was the persecution of the church in the 1930s. The rebellion, there was a movie recently about that. That also has a particular personal significance to you.

Eduardo Nevares: Yes, it does. It just so happens that my great-grandfather was a catechist outside the city of Monterey, Mexico, for his little town outside of Monterey. The priest would come and celebrate mass in his home.

Jose Cardenas: They had to do it early in the morning because they were being pursued by the government.

Eduardo Nevares: and hiding from the government. The priest would come at 3 a.m. I remember my mother telling us that she would hate that because she was sound asleep and my grandfather would come and wake them up in a hurried way because the priest had arrived. So sure enough they had to sit there half dozing and half sleeping, but trying to stay awake for the mass, and then she noticed that the grandfather would pull two or three bricks out of the wall and that is where they would hide the eucharist so the soldiers would not be able to find it, then it would be up to the grandfather to have these prayer services where he would gather people of his farm, his rancho, when the priest was not available and they would have a prayer service a scripture service, and at the end the grandfather would pull out the bricks and bring the eucharist and then be able to distribute holy communion.

Jose Cardenas: so very personal significance to you. Sounds like a wonderful trip. How do people get more information about it?

Eduardo Nevares: On our website they can find information. WWW.diocesephoenix.org. Or call the diocese office. We have flyers available. We do want them to register by the 6th of May so that way we would be sure to have everybody who would like to go on this pilgrimage signed up and ready to go.

Jose Cardenas: Thank you so much for joining us. It's good to have you back. Take care.

Eduardo Nevares: God bless you.

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Category: Community   |   Keywords: Test,