UB’s Poder Latinos Unidos holds Havana-themed banquet

Students come together to end the semester


A night of dancing, food, awards and Bachata allowed for a sense of escapism as the semester comes to a close.

Celebrating their 48th year as an organization, Poder Latinos Unidos and its supporters got together to fantasize a night in Havana, Cuba on Saturday evening. Poder held their end of semester banquet Saturday night at the Lafayette Hotel in Buffalo, which not only served as a closer for the organization and its members, but also a celebration of Hispanic culture at UB. The night also featured a speech by Latino studies professor Craig Centrie about the significance of the culture and the program itself.

“I thought it went well overall, I just wish it wasn’t planned the same day of the [Spring Fest] concert,” said Azalea Rosariao, a senior psychology major and president of Poder. “But I think those who came for the banquet made it an intimate event and we’re very thankful for those that came out. The band was great and it brought everyone together.”

The event also had support from affiliate organizations that were there.

The Black Student Union also came out to support Poder in a sign of solidarity. Both organizations routinely support each other in their respective events.

“We’re both from the [People of Color] council so we kind of have that relationship where we’ll support each other no matter what, even before we came to UB,” Rosario said. “We love it when they come out.”

Halfway through the night, Poder’s executive board called the attention of the guests to speak to them and give awards to their notable supporters and affiliates as a sign of appreciation.

Rosario said it’s important for their supporters to know they’re valued.

“This year we had a lot of individuals that supported us, coming out to our events and meetings,” Rosario said. “We wanted to give out awards to these individuals so they know that we appreciate them because without them there is no Poder.”

Dylan Rosales, a junior business management major, was one of attendees to receive an award.

“I just felt honored and happy,” Rosales said. “I didn’t think joining the club would get me an award. I love Poder and what it’s doing to represent Latinos in the community. Winning the award was just the icing on the cake to an already amazing year with them.

Rosales had won the award for “member of year.”

Students not affiliated with any organizations were also in attendance.

Jaspreet Kaur, a sophomore nursing major, enjoyed the banquet, despite a lower turnout than expected.

“Even though there was a low turnout, it was very high-spirited,” Kaur said. “The live band was definitely the highlight of the whole event.”

The event ended with excitement as La Krema, a local band that performed at the event, called some in attendance to dance with them on the stage.

Kenneth Kashif Thomas is the senior features editor and can be reached at kenneth.thomas@ubspectrum.com