farm workers and women led the Chicano civil rights movement of the 1960s that
demanded social change, enhanced education and economic opportunities. It was
the student protests and demands for Chicano studies and Chicano teachers,
however, that resulted in more Chicano high school graduates enrolling in
colleges and the hiring of Chicano professors to help train such teachers.
For the past 40 years, the Texas Association of Chicanos in Higher Education has been at the forefront of advocacy to improve opportunity in higher education for Americans of Mexican origin.
crusade and the activism that the Texas Association of Chicanos in Higher
Education displayed are chronicled in the new book, “Images of America: The
Texas Association of Chicanos in Higher Education,” by José Gutiérrez, a UT Arlington political science
professor, attorney and longtime member of TACHE.
project was a labor of love,” said Gutiérrez, who
co-authored the photo-laden political book with his wife, Natalia Verjat Gutiérrez, a professor of languages at Tarrant County College and
president of the TACHE chapter on the Northeast campus.
been involved with TACHE for 40 years helping to educate legislators in Austin
on the issues of concern to us before every session. The organization has been
supportive of students in pursuit of graduate degrees and was at one time the
only source of money for them at that level. Many members wanted a book so we
finally decided to get one done,” said Gutiérrez, who
joined the UT Arlington Department of Political Science in 1992.
128-page book contains nearly 200 photographs, maps and images from the
archives at the University of Texas at Austin. They range from a poster
promoting a documentary about the banning of the Mexican American Studies
program at a college in Arizona to photos of high-ranking Mexican Americans in
higher education such as Raymund Paredes, Texas Higher Education commissioner,
and Francisco Cigarroa, M.D., University of Texas System chancellor.
Gutiérrez said that after 40 years of hard work,
annual conferences, advocating for our students and faculty, educating our
legislators, TACHE realized that documenting the journey was equally important.
was an overdue and necessary step to educate the public on our history,” Verjat
Gutiérrez said. “It was a laborious effort
especially since the photographic material was hard to retrieve and it was
rather difficult to properly identify all the faces through four decades.
Nevertheless, it was a rewarding experience. I strongly believe in TACHE’s
mission and working with my husband was a journey of discovery.”
Texas Association of Chicanos in Higher Education was founded in 1975 by a
group of junior faculty at the University of Texas at Austin determined to
improve opportunity in higher education for Americans of Mexican origin. The
few Chicanos in higher education at the national and state levels sought to
institute Chicano studies programs and curriculums.
offered a forum for them to bring about change. They organized a national
convention that attracted major speakers, documentary and filmmakers, authors
and entertainers. They also developed Noticiario,
an official newsletter that incorporated the group’s logo symbolizing Chicanos’
Mayan, Aztec and Mexican heritage.
wife and I still proudly call ourselves Chicanos and coined a phrase for
readers of the book: ‘Share the history, feel the pride,’” Gutiérrez said.
of America: The Texas Association of Chicanos in Higher Education” is available
at the UT Arlington Bookstore, 400 Spaniolo Drive. Copies can also be ordered at
José Gutiérrez is one of the talented professors at The University of Texas at Arlington, a comprehensive research institution
of more than 33,300 students and 2,200 faculty members in the epicenter of
North Texas. It is the second largest institution in The University of Texas
System. Total research expenditures reached almost $78 million last year.
Visit www.uta.edu to learn more.