As the members of the International Development Committee of Latin America (IDC-LA) prepare for the XIII Latin America Conference on September 14–16, 2013 in Puebla, Mexico, they can’t help but reflect on the success of last year’s Mexico City event.
Yesly Contraras, Oscar J.
Martinez-Alaniz, Alma Carrasco,
and Sakil Malik
Among the 33 million people that live in Mexico City, the Puebla Reading Council added 200 more educators, writers, researchers, and reading and writing specialists on August 2–4, 2012 at the Instituto Tecnologico Autonomo de Mexico celebrating the III International Reading Seminar in the University and the II Writing Culture of Expressions at the National Convention. These events were organized by the Writing Culture Network of Discursive Community.
“In Mexico, it is necessary to promote and contact authoritative voices on literacy topics that may provide elements for reflection on the fundamental tasks by institutions of higher education on these issues,” the 2012 seminar flyers stated. “National and international experts at this conference can be found regularly meeting to help build and strengthen networks to create a tradition of reading and writing in the country.”
Puebla Reading Council Chair Alma Carrasco welcomed all the attendees, keynote speakers, and presenters. She explained the great efforts and hard work they have done to develop a professional and academic reading and writing network in Mexico.
The International Reading Association was represented by Director of the Global Operations Unit Sakil Malik, Global Operations Unit Program Assistant Yesly Contreras, and International Development Coordinating Committee Chair (2012–2014) Dr. Oscar Martinez-Alaniz. They witnessed the great success of such an academic event and met with other educators who work in Mexican private universities that are interested in opening new Reading Councils in other Mexican states such as Michoacán, Monterrey, Sonora, Chihuahua, San Luis Potosi, and Tlaxcala.
Seminar opening ceremony
According to Rene Ponce, Puebla Reading Council Liaison to the IDC-LA, “it was definitely a big task and commitment and the results were more than what the team expected. Important networking was done, and various projects aimed to the development of literacy in the region were consolidated and/or further developed.”
Puebla Reading Council staff and professional volunteers were so happy with the results. At this year’s event, they are planning to receive many international educators to share their reading and writing knowledge, practices, and experiences. The 2013 event will host the IDC-LA meeting where the 12 International Development Committee Chairs of Latin America will elect their new IDC-LA Chair for 2013–2015 and share the progression, achievements, and developments of their reading council projects.
Oscar J. Martinez-Alaniz is the International Development Coordinating Committees Chair and teaches at the Cervantes College.
This article was originally published in the April/May 2013 issue
of Reading Today. IRA members can read the interactive digital version of the magazine here. Nonmembers: join today!