6th Annual Cesar Chavez March to Honor Legacy of Former University Migrant Student Program Administrator
KINGSVILLE - March 25, 2010
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For six years, Marcos Benavides, the assistant director of the College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP) at Texas A&M University-Kingsville, was a familiar face at the annual Cesar Chavez March at the university.
Benavides, whose job it was to help migrant students deal with the struggles of migrant life and transition successfully into higher education, sought to support his students in many ways—marching in honor of the Hispanic and migrant civil rights leader Cesar Chavez was part of that effort.
This year, however—nearly four months after Benavides’ sudden death—the students for whom he opened the doors to higher education are organizing the Cesar Chavez March in honor of not only Chavez, but also in memory of their beloved mentor.
“I am a former CAMP student and I worked with Mr. Benavides for several years. He is the reason I came to school here because he offered me a scholarship and then, later, an opportunity to have an internship in Washington, D.C.,” said Miriam Villanueva, president of the A&M-Kingsville Pre-Law Society. “He always pushed us to do more than what is possible.”
Sponsored by the A&M-Kingsville Pre-Law Society and Sigma Delta Pi Spanish Honor Society, the march will begin at noon, Wednesday, March 31 at the Business Building parking lot. The first 100 participants will receive a meal and t-shirt. The first 200 participants will receive t-shirts.
Faustino Erebia, a former migrant worker and Chicano civil rights activist, and A&M-Kingsville vice president for student affairs Maria Gonzalez will serve as guest speakers. A plaque honoring Benavides also will be presented to his family during the event.
The Cesar Chavez March honors the historic 350-mile pilgrimage from Delano to Sacramento, California, which drew national attention to the plight of farm workers in the United States.
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