The Aura Chapter of the Spanish Honor Society

Tate Flack '20

In the fall of the 2018-2019 school year, advanced Spanish students led by Mrs. Alondra Pacheco founded the Ohio chapter of the National Spanish Honor Society at University school. Accepting applications from levels Spanish 4 Honors and up, Mrs. Pacheco, president Michael Castellanos, and vice president Tate Flack began to assemble their list of members.

The inauguration of the society fell in late October, with a Spanish poem recitation and a pledge to complete the requirements to maintain membership in the society. In addition, Spanish Honor Society members were mandated to complete 2 community service hours at either the South Euclid Public Library by teaching Spanish or the Ronald McDonald House by making and serving traditional foods.

At the South Euclid Public Library, members of the society regularly teach a variety of basic Spanish grammar, vocabulary, and conversational skills in order to connect members of the South Euclid community to the Spanish language. Typically, Mrs. Pacheco will inform two to three members of the society about the topic in order to give the students ample time to refresh on the material and then be able to aid the students in completing worksheets, answering questions, and conversing in the language.

At the Ronald McDonald House, members plan and subsequently cook various traditional Hispanic foods and serve them to residents of the house. The Ronald McDonald House serves those members of the community who seek medical assistance from the Cleveland clinic but do not live in the area and cannot afford a hotel for an extended period of time. These residents are provided with three meals a day, with dinner being provided by volunteer organizations similar to the Spanish Honor Society.

Mrs. Pacheco finds the Spanish Honor Society so meaningful because it promotes tolerance. She described to me an instance where her child was marginalized because of her native language and emphasized that organizations like these help to further our connection to cultures, affinities, and traditions unlike our own. She echoes author Carlos Fuentes to “recognize yourself in he and she who are not like you and me”. She says that, “we can be better” and that our community can be strengthened by breaking down barriers diverse cultures.