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Latino Daily News

Thursday September 1, 2011

Puerto Rican Communications Organizations Speak before U.S. Congress for the First Time

Puerto Rican Communications Organizations Speak before U.S. Congress for the First Time

Photo: University of Puerto Rico to Speak before U.S. Congress

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The University of Puerto Rico Alumni and Friends Abroad Association (UPRAA), is making history by presenting for the first time ever in the Congress of the United States, the community based forum: “Puerto Rico at its Political Crossroads: A forum to discuss the political future of the island.” This is the first time that a political discussion of this magnitude regarding the status of the island, has been organized in Congress by a community group organization and not for a political hearing. 

The forum will be held on the Cannon House Office Building-Caucus Room on Capitol Hill Washington, D.C. with a special presentation by Dr. Edwin Melendez, Director of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College (CUNY), New York. The forum will be moderated by Ray Suarez, Senior Correspondent of PBS. 

The event will have representatives of the three parties’ ideologies of the island, starting with a welcoming remark Pedro Pierluisi, Puerto Rico Resident Commissioner in Congress. The Secretary of State of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Hon. Kenneth D. McClintock-Hernandez will represent his position in favor of statehood. To represent the Commonwealth Party, Senator Hon. Eduardo Bathia-Gautier will represent the current status and Hon. Manuel Rodriguez-Orellana, former Senator of Puerto Rico will be representing the independence status. 

The Association of University of Puerto Rico Alumni and Friends Abroad (UPRAA) founded in 2003 as a not for profit organization, which represents Alumni and Friends of the University of Puerto Rico (UPR) educational system residing in the Continental U.S. The UPR educational system currently includes 11 campuses: Aguadilla, Arecibo, Bayamon, Carolina, Ciencias Medicas, Cayey, Humacao, Mayaguez, Ponce, Río Piedras, and Utuado. 

Our Association represents over 250,000 graduates of these campuses residing in the Continental U.S. UPRAA was created to establish a strong network, develop and conduct cultural initiatives, and support charitable programs. It has given more than $70,000 on scholarships. The Association serves as a link between UPR Alumni and Friends abroad and the UPR educational system and works towards promoting opportunities and creating a support network for its membership and the Hispanic community at large.