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Thirteenth Annual Conference
Cambio de Colores / Change of Colors
Latinos in the Heartland: 

Growing Together in New Destination Areas

University of Missouri - Columbia
Reynolds Alumni Center

June 25-27, 2014


—Call for Abstracts—



Key dates


Information about registration, hotels, and other details will be posted in February 2014.


About the Cambio de Colores 2014 conference


Since 2002, the annual Cambio de Colores (Change of Colors) Conference has brought together researchers, practitioners, decision-makers, and community members to discuss the issues that Missouri, the Heartland, and other states face as a result of dramatic demographic changes. The U.S. Census clearly shows that large numbers of immigrants have been settling in rural and urban areas of many Heartland states.


This year’s theme, “Growing Together in New Destination Areas,” is meant to encourage the discussion of research and best practices that can be used by communities to assist integration efforts in areas with a recent intake of immigrants. While native and foreign-born Latinos may constitute the majority of new arrivals, the conference organizers emphasize that immigrants from other areas of the world are also settling in these regions. The integration of these very diverse groups is being studied by academics and pursued by stakeholders, as the newcomers seek to become part and parcel of the social, economic, and cultural fabric of their new communities.


Cambio de Colores serves as a unique venue to share, learn, discuss, and identify critical areas where the development of information and promising practices will facilitate the successful transition of newcomers into communities large and small. The conference organizers seek presentations, posters, and panels on the conference themes described in the full call for abstracts, as well as workshops targeted to community members, leaders, and officials with the tools necessary to address these changes in ways that are sustainable and beneficial to all.


Led by the University of Missouri, Cambio de Colores is a collaborative effort that includes University of Missouri Extension, the campuses of the Missouri system, and other educational institutions in the Midwest and the Southern regions, as well as government and private organizations. Since 2009, the conference has benefited from the cooperation of the interstate initiative on “Latinos and Immigrants in Midwestern Communities,” North Central Education and Research Activity 216 (NCERA 216). 


The conference convenes academic researchers and extension specialists, public and private service providers, grassroots organizations, education and healthcare providers, state and local government institutions, policymakers, corporations, and newcomers themselves. The conference program focuses and builds on the sharing of university, government, and community resources, linking academic studies to the more applied perspective and best practices of people and institutions working at the heart of the changing communities. This synergy is the signature characteristic of this annual conference, which engages a wide array of stakeholders in economic and social development.


Please distribute this message among your professional and organizational circles.


Please follow and share the Conference page on Facebook


Questions about submissions can be sent to: decolores@missouri.edu

Cambio de Colores (Change of Colors) - Latinos in the Heartland
2014 Conference
Columbia, Missouri
June 25-27, 2014


E-mail: decolores@missouri.edu


Call for Submission of Abstracts and Papers

This is a call for abstracts for presentations, posters, workshops, and papers on best practices and/or scholarly and applied research. 


The following themes provide the conference framework:

1.       Change and Integration

2.       Civil Rights and Political Participation

3.       Education

4.       Health

5.       Entrepreneurship and Economic Development


All submitted abstracts should relate to one or more of these themes. For a detailed explanation of these topics, please refer to the Description of the Conference Themes included in this document. Abstracts are limited to 500 words.


If your abstract submission is approved, you will be able to present your work at the conference, and have the option to submit a paper for publication in the 2014 Cambio de Colores proceedings, that will later be published and distributed to all participants. Please see the Paper Submission Requirements—in the following pages— for details on preparing articles for the proceedings book. 


Proceedings books from previous years are available in electronic form at the Cambio de Colores website at www.cambiodecolores.org. Each conference’s Program is also available on the archival sites and the Library page, which has links to past presentations.


Please submit your abstract online from January 21 through February 24, 2014.


Authors of papers and presentations selected for the conference will be notified by March 4, 2014. Authors of selected papers will be requested to provide the paper in electronic format by June 13, 2014.


Please note that all presenters will be responsible for their own travel expenses and conference registration fees ($175 early bird, $200 regular, and $110 students). At least one author per presentation must register by April 18. More detailed registration, hotel, and CEU information will be available at the conference website in February 2014.



Information about Submissions of Abstracts and Papers

Abstract submissions will be made online.


If you have difficulties uploading your abstract, or if you have any questions regarding this call, please send a message to decolores@missouri.edu.


Committees will evaluate and select the abstracts that best fit the needs of their respective themes. Additional information will be sent to the presenters of the accepted abstracts with instructions for the conference.


The following information will be needed to successfully complete a submission:



Please select the type of submission:

□   Organized panel presentation (20 minutes each speaker; 3 speakers)

□   Research paper presentation (15 minutes)

□   Best practices presentation (15 minutes)

□   Workshop (up to 75 minutes)

□   Poster (on display throughout the conference and interactive poster session)


Please indicate if you will submit a paper for publication in the 2014 Conference Proceedings book (deadline: June 13, 2014).  Please note that special consideration will be given to abstract submissions that include a commitment to submit papers for publication.



The abstract should be 500 words or less. If your abstract includes citations please follow APA style guidelines (available at www.apastyle.org).


Please have the following for the abstract:

  1. Title of the abstract
  2. Contact information for  the author(s): name, address, phone, email, title and organization; please list Contact Author first
  3. Theme: the theme you want your abstract to be considered in. If in doubt, please specify the possible themes, and the reviewers will determine what theme works best for consideration of your abstract.
  4. Type: indicate whether the presentation is research or promising practices; if it’s research, please specify methodology (qualitative, quantitative, case study, etc.).
  5. For applied methods and/or research, please include in the summary of your presentation an explanation of how your work would link to policy and/or practice.
  6. Scope of the presentation: local, state, regional, national, or global
  7. Article: identify whether your intention is to have a paper considered for inclusion in the conference proceedings publication (see paper submission guidelines below).


Please upload your abstract to www.cambiodecolores.org, starting on January 21, 2014. The deadline for submitting abstracts is February 24, 2014.

Presenters chosen to participate in the conference will be notified by March 4, 2014.



Please submit your poster proposal using the online abstract submission form (available January 21 – February 24) and be prepared to follow the requirements as explained above in the section on Abstract Content. Posters should be set up on the first day of the conference. Easels and boards will be provided, and presenters should bring their own tape, pins, paper, etc. Poster size should not exceed 4’x4’.



The following information is for authors who are also submitting papers for the conference’s book of proceedings.

Submission Date:  Please submit the paper by June 13, 2014, in order to be included in the 2014 conference proceedings.

Length: limit the length of the paper to eight pages maximum. References should be included and do not count against the page limit. Papers should be double-spaced with one-inch margins in Times Roman or an equivalent 12 pt. font. Include title of the paper and name and affiliation of each author, beginning with the primary and contact author.

Format: electronic text formats only, including .doc, .docx, .rtf and .ods. Please do not submit pdf files.

Citation: please follow APA style guidelines (www.apastyle.org).

All graphic elements, including diagrams, charts, and graphs, must be submitted with the paper as .jpg, .gif, or .png files, and must be high-quality images of no less than 300 dpi and be at least 3.5 inches wide.





Description of the Conference Themes


Change and Integration

The increasing population of Latino/as and other immigrants arriving from all over the globe into the Midwest and the Southern United States has affected communities, organizations, and institutions, and given birth to many programs and practices across the regions to deal with the changes taking place. In order for a community experiencing change to thrive and prosper, it must ensure that a growing immigrant population becomes integrated with the receiving community(ies) and that diversity across categories such as race, ethnicity, social class, gender, age, sexual orientation, religion,  and culture is welcome and encouraged. Integration in changing communities is envisioned as newcomers’ full participation in the economic, social, cultural, and political foundation of the communities they live in, while preserving unique cultural attributes, which directly contribute to the development of diversity in a community. Moreover, change and integration are experienced differently between and among underserved populations and contexts. There is urgent need for studies concerning the formation of connections between local residents and recently arrived immigrants, as well as in the maintenance of cultural diversity and policy leadership. The Change and Integration theme invites submissions by academics, professionals, and practitioners from multiple disciplines that contribute to the current discourse and understanding of causes, consequences, and responses to immigration in the new immigrant destinations, especially the Midwest and Southern United States.  The goal of the sessions is to cover information on research and best practice experiences to 1) better understand the contexts of settlement of the newcomer populations, 2) to define the characteristics of the immigration phenomenon, and 3) to identify effective tools for integrating new populations in rural and urban places.


We encourage submissions related to strategies that communities have undertaken to address issues of immigration; to measure the effects of federal, state, and local policies and regulations in rural and urban communities; to study the significance of the physical environment on integration of immigrants; and to explore the opportunities, vulnerabilities, uniqueness, and commonalities associated with urban and rural Latinos and other immigrants. 


Civil Rights and Political Participation

The goals of the Civil Rights theme are to raise awareness and to share initiatives about the legal issues that Latino and other immigrant groups face, especially in new destination states and regions. The Civil Rights theme of the Cambio de Colores conference invites the submission of abstracts for presentations and workshops about legal and political matters affecting Latino and other immigrants, and that describe experiences in the application of specific legal tools. Changes and potential changes on the federal level deserve discussion, as well as ongoing attempts by state and local policymakers to address issues of immigration, and the effects those policies may be having on the integration efforts of communities.


We encourage submissions that deal with appropriate legal changes, as well as training and information dissemination programs that strengthen the ability of immigrants, receiving communities, and supporting organizations to respond to legal, political, and cultural challenges. The present situation, albeit difficult and still uncertain, offers hope for better policies both locally and nationally. Cambio de Colores is especially interested in presentations and workshops about outreach programs and legislative efforts that have improved, or might improve, the climate in communities receiving Latino and other immigrants, the study and analysis of transition from undocumented to legal status and impacts on the individual and community, political engagement processes, and in presentations on current and historical research about the factors that favor or preclude integration of immigrants in the receiving communities.



Education plays an important role in the construction of our future society, and the academic success of the younger newcomers will be a requirement for a prosperous community and country. The 2014 Cambio de Colores Conference is interested in presentations of Educational Research and Best Practices, which explore educational issues, policies and practices that impact Latino/a and other immigrant learners of all ages. Special attention will be given to submissions that emphasize the experiences of newcomers in the Heartland – in comparison to coastal cities and states – as they become more important and prominent throughout this region of the U.S. The education committee would like to examine both the challenges that educational institutions may face in providing the best education for Latino/as and newcomers of varying immigration statuses, as well as their strengths and what they contribute to the educational system. Examples of Educational Research and Best Practice topics include: the relationship of culture and achievement; English language learners; multicultural competencies in teacher training and practice; implications of federal, state, and local statutes on achievement; parental involvement; after-school programs; the impact of pre-school programs; high school and post-secondary education retention; community education programs and resources; preparing for and accessing post-secondary education; and programs in rural and urban school districts.  



The environment people live in, genetics, medical care, and behavior are the primary variables determining physical and mental health and well-being. For newcomers, issues of access to health care resources and cultural and linguistic differences also are important factors. What are the effects of these factors on the health of Latinos and other newcomers in the Midwest, the South and other new destination areas? Topics to be discussed should include comparison of immigrants’ health status to other groups; translating research into practice (best practices); and policies which support or inhibit healthy behaviors.  Key research and practice themes may include: community and research related to health care disparities: barriers to health care access and strategies to overcome them, networking for health care, community-based health care programs; cultural gaps and bridging: positive and negative consequences of acculturation and health behavior modification, influence of race or ethnicity on doctor-patient relationship, cultural competence, traditional practices; health literacy: patient and provider education, outreach to families with children with disabilities, policies and community education programs.


Entrepreneurship and Economic Development

Research and educational programs that enhance involvement of Latinos and immigrants in entrepreneurial and economic development activities are vital to the expansion of the regional economy and to the integration process by and into the receiving communities. Research and education on factors that hinder and/or promote their involvement and success in these critical activities is important to inform policy development, enhance service delivery, and provide additional support to individuals and communities. Also important is research and educational programs that take into account the risk-taking and eager mindset that usually characterize migrant people, as well as how to better use the newcomers’ own cultural and social capital assets to further their success as entrepreneurs. Comparative studies that take into account these issues will be of special interest, as well as workshops about best practices that could be applicable in the South and the Heartland. Public service agencies, advocates, or anyone working in the fields of workforce or economic development, among others, are encouraged to share their projects, programs, and best practices. In addition, studies about the effects—negative or positive—of state immigration laws on the local economies and fiscal receipts will be very important to have a fuller picture of the impact of immigrants.