Cambio de Colores 2005

Latinos in Missouri:
Connecting Research to Policy and Practice
Hoy y Mañana

Reynolds Alumni Center, University of Missouri-Columbia,
March 30, 31 & April 1st, 2005

About the annual conference

Full Brochure available (PDF format, 430 kb)

Cambio de Colores (Change of Colors) in Missouri� is an annual conference that focuses on issues related to the current Latino immigration to the state in particular and the Midwest in general.� With the goal of contributing to a smooth integration of the new population, the main objectives of the conference are:

  • To assess the changes brought about by the presence of new Latino urban and rural settlers in every region of the state.
  • To inform about the multiple contributions�economic, social, and cultural�that these new Missourians are bringing to many a community and to the state as a whole.
  • To understand the opportunities that this demographic change brings to the state, its people, communities, businesses, and educational institutions.
  • To provide a forum to discuss the change and growth challenges posed to institutions and people�both new and old Missourians.
  • To share relevant scholarship and best practices, and identify knowledge and service gaps that need to be addressed.

The annual three-day conference convenes academic research and extension specialists, public and private service providers, grassroots organizations, state and local government institutions, politicians, corporations, and newcomers themselves. The conference is sponsored by the University of Missouri, in cooperation with community and state partners. It is mostly funded by participants (numbering around 300) and sponsors.

The Hispanic and Latin American Faculty & Staff Association of the University of Missouri-Columbia (HLAFSA), established in late 1999, took a principal role in creating and leading these conferences, with the enthusiastic support of the University of Missouri System institutions, and the collaboration of many organizations in our state.

A groundbreaking, three-day event took place in March 2002 at the University of Missouri-Columbia: Cambio de colores (Change of Colors). Latinos in Missouri: A call to action!�A synthesis of the experiences, facts and knowledge derived from this conference is the monograph Cambio de Colores. Immigration of Latinos to Missouri, which remains a state-of-the-art publication.

The 2003 conference, Cambio de colores (Change of Colors). Latinos in Missouri: Neighbors in Urban and Rural Communities,� convened at the campus of the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

In 2004, the conference �Cambio de colores (change of colors). Latinos in Missouri: Gateway to a New Community� was hosted by the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

The diverse and enthusiastic participation in these events is demonstrating the relevance and the urgency of addressing today the challenges and the opportunities that arise in Missouri and other Midwestern states, as Latinos and other newcomers settle as workers, families and members of communities.

The fourth conference, Cambio de colores (change of colors). Latinos in Missouri: Connecting Research to Policy and Practice - Hoy y Ma�ana,� will take place at the University of Missouri-Columbia, in March 30 � April 1st, 2005. The conference is organized around themes that include change, communities, youth, education, health, and civil rights.

Also, to institutionalize this effort and to foster further permanent work on these issues, the University of Missouri-Columbia has established in the fall of 2004 the Cambio Center for Research and Outreach on Latinos and Changing Communities in Missouri.

About the 2005 Conference

In 2005 the program is stressing efforts that impact policy-making and shape the practices being implemented in communities.� To what extent is research affecting policy? What kinds of programs and practices are resulting?� What are the policy implications of current and ongoing research efforts?

The presentations in the conference are mostly the result of a Call for Abstracts announced during the fall of 2004. The conference format includes five Plenary Sessions, and four blocks of concurrent breakout sessions addressing research, best practices, workshops and discussion panels on the themes of the conference. Also, there are poster and table display sessions, learning stations, and multiple opportunities for networking.

The five conference themes are:

  • Change and Wellbeing: social political and economic changes and the approaches to facilitate the inclusion and integration of newcomers in rural and urban communities.
  • Civil Rights: legal challenges, with a focus on positive legal changes that strive for towards a legislative agenda.
  • Education: from early to higher and adult education; addressing diversity, cultural differences, the achievement gap, implications of the No Child Left Behind Act, barriers to access to higher education, and rural and urban schools.
  • Health:� access, quality, cultural competence, language barriers, policies, alternative health providers.
  • Youth, Families, and Communities: identity, youth development, adaptation, behavior, mentoring, family and sending and receiving community issues.

Fast fast facts about Latinos

In the U.S.:
  • Hispanics are the largest and fastest-growing minority ethnic group in the United States
  • Latinos in the U.S. are 39.9 million (July 1, 2003), accounting for half of the 9.4 million added to the nation�s population since the 2000 Census. Growth rate is 13.0 percent over that 39-month period; almost four times that of the total population (3.3 percent). (Census Bureau.)
  • Hispanic population of the United States will increase by almost 25 million people by 2020, and second-generation Hispanics will account for 47 percent of that growth. (Pew Hispanic Center)
  • For the first time, second- and third-generation Hispanics account for most of the growth in the Hispanic population, replacing new immigrants, who fueled the growth in the past. (Pew Hispanic Center)
In Missouri:
  • The Latino population almost doubled in Missouri (92%) in the period 1990-2000.� Additionally, the estimated Missouri Latino population for the year 2003 is 130,928, up from 118,592 in the 2000 census. (Census Bureau)
  • The Latino population has increased in 110 of the 115 counties of the state. Latinos come to Missouri to work. Overwhelmingly, newcomers have steady jobs and pay taxes, and an increasing number buy cars and homes: they are the new Missourians.
  • Kansas City ranks eleventh nationally among the fastest growing Latino populations residing in urban centers.
  • Meatpacking rural counties�Sullivan, McDonald, Pettis, Lawrence, Saline, and Jasper�experienced from a 4 to 20-fold increase in Latino population.
  • Small cities, such as Joplin, Branson, Springfield, Columbia, Jefferson City, and Warrensburg, have doubled or tripled their representation of Latinos.


About the 2005 conference content

Fast facts about Latinos