Latino Educational Training Institute™
Since 1989: Information • Education • Training • Leadership
LETI Update
Member Comments • Comentarios desde los Miembros • For current activities (para asuntos contemporáneas), see/vea Calendar • Calendario
LLI Graduation Program Set
Attached is the schedule for the Latino Leadership Initiative's graduation ceremony to be held Saturday, 10:00 AM to noon at Edmonds Community College, Woodway Hall Suite 200, 20000 68th Avenue West, Lynnwood, WA 98036.

Click to download the program

EDCC's Culinary Arts Program, Training to feed the NW since 1987
Our neighbors at Edmonds Community College have developed an excellent culinary arts program. Here's a preview.
Hazel Miller Foundation Renews Support for 'Bienestar' Program in 2018

LETI is pleased to announce the renewal of a grant from Seattle's Hazel Miller Foundation in support of our popular Bienestar de la Mujer Latina (Latin American Women's Well-being) program. The grant was announced earlier this month in a letter from the Foundation transcribed here.

Latino Educational Training Institute
6605 202nd St. SW, Suite 300, Lynnwood, WA 98036

March 5, 2018

Diana White, Chair
Hazel Miller Foundation
Seattle, WA 98104

Dear Ms. White,

The Latino Educational Training Institute is proud to acknowledge the receipt of the generous grant of $10,000.00 from the Hazel Miller Foundation for the continuing support of the Latina Wellbeing Network and the "Bienestar Total de la Mujer Latina" program is now in its third year of providing vital informational and access to health, family, and educational resources to Latinas in South Snohomish County.

The Bienestar program continues to be the primary point of entry and first step for many of our local Latinas on their path to educational advancement and total family health. Many of the program participants also completed our Financial Literacy series and enrolled in Adult Spanish GED. We regularly see the Bienestar ladies engaging with and giving back to the community through volunteer participation with LETI and other community organizations at health fairs and local events.

We are extremely grateful that the Hazel Miller Foundation has chosen to continue to support the Latina Wellbeing Network, and we will continue to strive to deliver a program that supports Mrs. Miller's vision for the local community. Your support is truly changing lives and opening opportunities for Latino families in South Snohomish County.

Thank you again for giving LETI the opportunity to deliver the Bienestar program in 2018.

Signed in Original

Rosario Reyes
Executive Director

The following is a testimonial we recently received from former participants in the Bienestar program.

March 1, 2018

RE: Bienestar Total de La Mujer Latina

To whom it may concern:

I am writing this letter as a testimonial from us, Maria Rodriguez and my husband Quintin Gomez; that we have obtained lots of personal growth attending the Bienestar sessions. We have iearned of a multitude of resources in our community that we had no idea existed. By attending these sessions, we have made a lot of new friends. We took advantage of the Financial Literacy ciasses LET! offered and through one of the speakers from America Job Link, Mr. Francisco Pacheco, who helped us in creating a resume so complete with all our life experiences, we were amazed by the many calls we got. We were contacted even from people outside of the state and both of us were able to obtain jobs in this area.

It was thanks to our attendance to the workshops of Bienestar that helped us reaiize that we can dream big at any age. Currently, we have enrolled in the Spanish GED in the mornings. We attend the Goodwill Industries for computer classes in the afternoons, and in the evenings we come back to LETI for ESL classes in preparation to pursue a certificate in the future. We are very grateful for the services given by LETI and the kindness with which it was delivered.

Signed in Original

Maria Rodriguez & Quintin Gomez

Pictured at a recent, related event honoring LETI volunteers and graduates are (L-R)
Jose Tello, Xkorpis Graphics, graphic design volunteer for LETI since 1998;
Rosario Reyes, LETI Founder and Executive Director;
Maria Urrunaga, Las Americas Business Center;
Betty Koteles, EdCC, Spanish GED Instructor;
Quintin Gomez and Maria Rodriguez, Bienestar graduates, LETI Financial Literacy graduates and currently, EdCC students in Spanish GED;
Jonny Hernandez, EdCC, Spanish GED Tutor;
Tom Laing, LETI Director of Development;
Michaela Sarmiento, Bienestar graduate, LETI Financial Literacy graduate.
(Click the image for a larger view.)
Sponsors: Plan Now for Leadership Gala May 5
LETI and the Latino Educational Training Institute (LETI) invite you to become a sponsor or a table captain for the graduating Class of 2018 at the 5th Annual “Latino Leadership Initiative Dinner Dance Fundraiser” on Saturday May 5th, 2018 Mountlake Terrace, Washington.

Your support will give 36 Latino students from Edmonds Community College, Everett Community College, and Skagit Valley College the opportunity to learn leadership skills through a series of leadership workshops, mentoring programs, and an extensive community group service project to increase the quantity and quality of Latino Leaders in our communities.

Time: 6 PM to Midnight (note change from original announcement)
Date: May 5, 2018
Place: Community Senior Center Mountlake Terrace, Washington.

Click on the adjacent image for a printable reminder. Click the link below the article for an reservation form.

Reservation Form

Leadership Kickoff Evokes Strong Student Response
The kickoff event of Latino Leadership Initiative for 2018 was held January 6th at Edmonds Community College. The following are comments taken from student evaluations.

“What was the highlight of today?.

  • The digital Disruption explanation.
  • The speech of Dr. Antonio Sanchez when he reminded us to ask ourselves where our roots are coming from and to be proud of our culture and our language.
  • Seeing and hearing Jean Hernandez speak again was the highlight of the day.
  • The diverse history and informative details given by the speakers and the film were the highlight of the day.
  • Watching the film. (Harvest of Empire)
  • History and Contributions of Latinos in WA State.
  • Definitely the presentation done by Dr. Antonio Sanchez.
  • Dr. Antonio Sanchez and Juan, Luis and their passion when it comes to helping the Latino community.
  • The Panel discussions as well as the Documentary.
  • I really liked all the speakers, they all had something important to share.
  • Dr. Antonio Sanchez and John Kim were the ones who impacted the most.
  • John Kim was the most highlight for me because I didn’t have an idea how important it is to take step by step to achieve your goal in school.
  • I found the panel extremely informative; although all the information was interesting.
  • The History and Contributions of Latinos in WA State, but the movie was impressive.
  • To know where you are from, represent your culture.
  • Getting to learn about the REAL History of WA.

Please name two ideas or statements of today that you won’t forget easily.

  • If you don’t run for government someone else will make choices for you. “You have a voice and are empowered to do anything.
  • Career advice, preparing to work in a changing world.
  • That we are a presence in the U.S, your thoughts don’t have to be approved anymore.
  • If you are not involved, someone will be and they may not have your best interests in mind; be strong, be authentic.
  • The history of Latin America and how has it been affected by U.S..
Contribute to LETI While you Shop!
You can now contribute to LETI painlessly while you shop at By clicking the adjacent logo or the link below you can set up a special relationship whereby Amazon will contribute to LETI a portion of the value of each purchase.

Contribute Now!

Free Recycling Training Offered; Se ofrece entrenamiento gratis de reciclaje
Become an Ambassador for the Environment with WSU Extension! Learn about the problem of waste, what things can be recycled and composted, how to compost, alternatives to household hazardous products, and the importance of conserving our natural resources for the betterment of our lives and our future generations. This training will be offered in Spanish on Saturdays, October 14 through November 11 (5 days total), from 9:30 AM – 3:30 PM each day. The training is free, but there will be no childcare. We will meet at WSU Extension, McCollum Park, 600 128th St. SE Everett, WA. Optional field trips to recycling, composting and hazardous waste disposal facilities will also be offered at no charge.

After the training, share what you learned at 4 Latino community events to help others make the right recycling choices! To participate, register no later than October 6th with Yolimar Rivera at or (425) 357-6029.

This training is possible thanks to the following sponsors: Waste Management, Snohomish County Solid Waste and WSU Snohomish County Extension.

Se ofrece entrenamiento gratis de reciclaje
¡Conviértase en un Promotor del Medio Ambiente con WSU Extension! Aprenda sobre el problema de la basura, qué cosas se pueden reciclar y compostar, qué es la composta, alternativas a productos químicos del hogar, y la importancia de conservar nuestros recursos naturales para el bienestar de nuestras vidas y de nuestras generaciones futuras. Este entrenamiento se ofrecerá en español los sábados entre el 14 de octubre y el 11 de noviembre (5 días en total), de 9:30 AM a 3:30 PM cada día. El entrenamiento es gratis, pero no habrá cuidado de niños. Nos reuniremos en WSU Extension, McCollum Park, 600 128th St. SE Everett, WA. Viajes opcionales a facilidades de reciclaje, composta y manejo de materiales peligrosos serán ofrecidos sin costo alguno.

Luego del entrenamiento, comparta lo que aprendió en 4 eventos con las comunidades Latinas para ayudar a los demás a tomar decisiones de reciclaje correctas. Para participar, regístrese en o antes del 6 de octubre con Yolimar Rivera a o (425) 357-6029.

Este entrenamiento es posible gracias a los siguientes auspiciadores: Waste Management, Snohomish County Solid Waste and WSU Snohomish County Extension.

Response to DACA Program Termination
We've been receiving many inquiries about the Trump adminitration's decision to terminate the DACA program. Until some clarity is achieved, we will post information as received, newest first.

Siga el enlace por abajo para un informe importante de la Ciudad de Seattle
Follow the link at bottom for information from the City of Seattle

From WA State Board for Community & Technical Colleges (5 Sep 17)

Hello, Colleagues:

In light of today’s DACA announcement, please find attached Washington State’s joint higher education DACA statement.

Our community and technical college system will continue to open our doors and hearts to the rich diversity of students we serve. We are proud to be the educational home for all students.

Please see below for a collection of student resources:

As always, may we continue to be excellent to each other and the students we serve.

In unity,

Ha T. Nguyen
Policy Associate, Basic Education for Adults
Interagency Communication and Messaging
Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion | Barrier Mitigation
p: 360.704.4322 | e: | website:
WA State Board for Community & Technical Colleges
1300 Quince St SE | PO Box 42495 | Olympia, Washington 98504

FROM Washington State Democrats (5 Sep 17)


I am outraged. This morning, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Trump administration will be ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in six months -- leaving 17,000 Washingtonians who were brought to this country as children at risk for deportation.

I have news for Trump and Sessions -- Washington Democrats aren’t going to let them get away with this. Governor Inslee and Attorney General Ferguson have plans to sue the Trump administration over their inhumane plan. And our Democrats in Congress will work to pass comprehensive immigration reform and ensure that undocumented youth are protected.

But that’s not enough, friend. We need an overwhelming response from Washingtonians who are sick and tired of innocent kids being used as political pawns. Will you add your name to tell Republicans that DACA recipients (also known as DREAMers) are here to stay?

Your signature will accomplish three things:
  • It will let Washington Republicans like Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Dave Reichert know that there will be HUGE electoral consequences if they back Trump’s plan.
  • It will show your support for Democrats who are working to advance humane immigration reform and protect DACA recipients.
  • And it will show the country and the world that Washington State will not allow our neighbors to be rounded up and deported.

    Friend, will you add your name to tell Republicans in Washington, DC and Washington State that DREAMers are here to stay?

    This isn’t over,

  • From NW Immigrant Rights Project (5 Sep 17)

    Dear Rosario,

    As you may already know, the Trump Administration announced earlier today that it is ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

    Since 2012, DACA has provided temporary protection to undocumented people who came to the United States at an early age, by providing relief from deportation, accessible pathways to careers, and additional stability for our communities to thrive.

    Cruelly, the approximately 800,000 DACA recipients who have relied in this program, including nearly 18,000 here in Washington, now face an uncertain future.

    NWIRP stands with them and with all others in opposing this misguided decision. We call on Congress to take action promptly to pass legislation that will provide DACA recipients and other undocumented individuals with a pathway to citizenship.

    In the meantime, NWIRP will work with community partners to support DACA recipients and their families who will be directly impacted by today's tragic decision. We know some DACA recipients may qualify for other forms of immigration protection and we want to ensure they have information about and access to those options. And many others will need help submitting renewal applications before a new deadline of October 5th for those whose work permits expire on or before March 5th, 2018. More information is available at this community advisory that we just posted to our website.

    NWIRP is working with the Washington Dream Act Coalition and other partners to host community forums to address questions from community members with DACA and their families. We will have immigration attorneys on hand to answer questions regarding an individual's personal situation. The first three events are scheduled for:

    Granger, WA
    September 11th at 5:30pm
    NCEC/Radio KDNA Building
    121 Sunnyside Avenue
    Granger, WA 98932

    Wenatchee, WA
    September 12th at 6pm
    Wenatchee Community Center
    504 S. Chelan Avenue
    Wenatchee, WA 98801

    South King County
    September 16th at 10am
    Highline College
    2400 S. 240th Street
    Des Moines, WA 98189

    In addition, we are collaborating with WDC, which is hosting a forum for educators to learn how to support their undocumented students in light of this news:

    Educators Forum (Seattle Area)
    September 18th at 5pm
    Cleveland High School
    5511 15th Avenue S
    Seattle, WA 98189

    We and our partners at the Washington Immigrant and Solidarity Network will also be hosting a Facebook Live stream today to discuss these issues, which you can find at our Facebook page. The English livestream will be at 4pm, the Spanish livestream will be at 4:30pm.

    Information about additional events and other resources, including a new DACA advisory can be found at

    If you would like to support these efforts, donations are greatly appreciated.

    Donate Here

    Thank you for continuing to stand with us. We are so grateful to count you as a partner.

    With gratitude,
    Jorge L. Barón
    Executive Director

    Seattle Info

    LETI-UW Bothell Summer Program Students Share Impresssions
    LETI Student Testimonies
    BIS 340 // Approaches to Cultural Research
    DeSmet, Summer 2017

    Earlier this summer LETI participated in a course taught at University of Washington's Bothell campus (BIS 340 // Approaches to Cultural Research), taught by Prof. Raissa DeSmet.

    The course description and student evaluations follow.

    Class Description

    This course is an introduction to cultural theory and cultural research centered around the urgent issue of gentrification and displacement. Together we will ask: What is culture, why does it matter, and how can we study it? How can researching cultural practices reveal relations of power and privilege? And how does power structure our notions of space, place, identity, and belonging? We will examine different approaches to understanding the production of culture, as well as different methodologies for carrying out cultural research. Throughout the course, we will move between critically evaluating cultural research and carrying out mini-research assignments. As a hybrid community-based learning and research (CBLR) course, students will undertake site-based service work at the Latino Educational Training Institute (LETI), and will be asked to connect their site-based experiences to the wider themes and questions pursued in the course. Ultimately, students should leave this course with an understanding gentrification and displacement as complex processes with significant impacts for minoritized communities, a sense of the methodological possibilities within cultural studies, and a new appreciation for the ways that we produce and reproduce culture in our everyday lives.

    Student Testimonials

    “Not only did the service work allow us to learn more about these people in relation to the course content, but I also realized that our lives paralleled more than I thought. One of the conversations I had with someone was about the way we are perceived by others. Specifically, someone explained to me how whenever he visited Mexico, everyone saw him as American rather than Mexican, and in America people see him as Mexican rather than American. Since I am American but a minority, I feel like I am not viewed as American sometimes. Then, when I visit my family abroad, I feel that they view me as American and an outsider…. The service work at LETI allowed us to see the true impact that race and ethnicity have… [in our culture]." --RB
“I had a really positive feeling about this class this quarter as well as the partnership with LETI and I look forward to continuing to keep an eye on the work that LETI is doing in the Lynnwood area and potentially helping them out again if they need more help." --NB

    “There were two significant takeaways from this [service] experience. The first is that, despite there being many cultural differences among peoples, as well as differences of “power”, having an open heart is key to truly engaging, understanding, and bridging the gap of communication or experience…. And this, I believe, is what will save our communities.” -—MC

    “Visiting LETI and being a help on site has given me a clear understanding of community strength and how the neighborhood around this site is impacted from day to day. Providing service to this organization was a beneficial experience that gave me insight on gentrification. Meeting families and young members from the community and neighborhood was essential to understanding the effect the changes and transitions the area was going through, happening through the interactions between families and I directly…. I was able to make genuine…personal connections with…the community members." --SF

    “My experience at LETI really opened my eyes to the LatinX community. To see how happy many of the community members were when they swung by to eat food or listen to music made me feel as if all the work we were putting in was really benefitting people. Bringing the community together and helping others get to know each other showed me just how important a well bonded community can be in bringing comfort, as well as helping one feel as if they are part of something bigger. To hear stories of travel and family from the LatinX people gave myself and my classmates a completely different perspective to consider.” -—SJ

    “Learning about LETI and the work this organization is doing I think is great in many ways. They are helping those who need the help, but also sending a positive message to everyone as it is very important to help. My job at LETI was we met with Tom on first day and with classmates I would go on a trip in the Lynnwood neighborhood areas to invite everyone to the Friday barbeques that would take place for the couple of Fridays. This was my first time going door-to-door and canvassing to different areas of Lynnwood, and I would say I learned a lot from each areas…. [Through] each door we could see a new and different story and world." --MK

    “I thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful experience, this is my first community based learning course and I agree that learning in the classroom combined with learning outside the classroom is a beneficial method of not only comprehending the course material, but to practice, observe, and retain it." --ASL

    “I am very thankful for this great opportunity and plan to stay involved in the…future." --BM

    “This whole thing wasn’t about me, as a white person, coming in to help “save” the people living in this brown neighborhood. It was about getting out of my own little bubble and getting to see gentrification first-hand and hearing from the voices who are impacted by it. I’m also really thankful that I had the opportunity to cook authentic Mexican food, dance, immerse myself in a new culture, and come together with a great group of people. Overall, my time at LETI was incredibly enjoyable, rewarding, and enlightening." --GN

    “Through this Community-Based Learning and Research program, I was taught an invaluable lesson to simply outreach, even when I don’t have the answers, if it means that I can help lead someone towards the correct direction. Overall, I was delighted to serve for an organization like LETI because I think it will make a difference in the community and enrich those in need." --JN

    “It was very inspiring to work with Tom, Rosario and the class to reach out to the surrounding apartments and neighborhoods to raise awareness about what resources LETI has to offer them. Overall, I believe working with LETI was a very effective way of learning, getting to know and understand the people that have experienced or observed gentrification is an eye-opening experience, if not life changing. Real life experience is so much more effective compared to basing your knowledge and research solely on written material." --AP

    “A key lesson from the class that made me think about what I can do in my personal life is to not just preach about change, but to be in the streets with people that are suffering from gentrification. Being part of LETI did allowed me to do exactly that." --QT

    “This experience was so wonderful to be a part of and I loved being able to work with classmates on something that benefits a community in need." --BW

    LETI is a community partner of the Bothell campus and was awarded a community service award by the University in 2017.
    WA L&I Presents Worker Safety Instructions
    Here is a review of presentations made by the WA Labor and Industries group during the Latino EXPO 2016 (South Snohomish County Latino Safety and Health Fair). See titles below and follow (click) the links to the L&I Power Point Presentations (in English):
    Occupational Asthma
    Ergonomics and WMSDs
    Common WMSD* Hazards in Your Workplace and Some Solution Ideas
    Fire Safety
    Using a Fire Extinguisher
    First Aid
    First Aid for General Industry
    Job Safety Analysis
    General Safety Analysis
    Ladder Safety
    General Ladder Use Hazards
    Motor Vehicle Safety
    Distracted Driving 

    Working Alone
    Working Alone Safely
    Guide to Starting a Business; Guía de Emprender un Negocio
    Entrepreneur magazine has published a summary of ideas and procedures to help readers understand basic concepts of forming a new company. A link to the Spanish text (PDF) follows. We recommend the article if you are contemplating a new venture.

    La revista Entrepreneur (Entreprenista) ha publicado un sumario de ideas y procesos para ayudar a sus lectores entender concetptos básicos de la formación de una compañia nueva. Un enlace al texto (PDF) sigue. Lo recomendamos a ellos que quieren abrir un negocio nuevo.

    UWB Nursing School Names LETI Partner of Year
    LETI has been named the first recipient of the Outstanding Partner of the Year award from the University of Washington Bothell's School of Nursing and Health Services. The award was presented January 19, 2017, at a ceremony at the campus and was accepted by Rosario Reyes. Pictured at the award ceremony are LETI Vice-president Dr. Rees Clark, President and Executive Director Rosario Reyes, Intern Jasmine Sanchez, and Program Manager Tom Laing III.
    Leadership Initiative 2017 Begins

    Our Latino Leadership Initiative Kick-off, held at Everett Community College's Jackson Center, on Saturday, January 7, 2017, was described as an inspirational and rewarding experience by all our LLI participants.

    In their evaluations, the students not only praised the "great Mexican food" but they also described the presentations by our professional team of mentors, professors, legislators (and the "Harvest of Empire" Documentary) as eye-opening, riveting, essential new knowledge and insight they most certainly needed but had lacked.

    With Dr. Jose Garcia-Pabón of Washington State University Extension as the Master of Ceremony, the morning began with a personal, heartfelt introduction by André Guzman, Associate Dean of Advising and College Success at EvCC, in which he described essential elements of a leader’s journey, his own path, obstacles to overcome and the high probability of a rewarding future, especially for college-educated Latinos.

    Christina Castorena, Vice President of Student Services at EdCC, delivered an upbeat overview of the origins of the LLI program, followed by an insightful address by the City of Lynnwood mayor, Nicola Smith—both very strong supporters of the LLI Program and our Latino youth.

    Next, a panel of elected officials offered insight into the most pressing social and political problems facing our communities as well as a compelling vision of their own personal path to leadership. Latino community activist Juan Peralez expertly moderated the panel that included Senator Maralyn Chase; former Washington State Legislature House of Representatives Velma Veloria and Luis Moscoso as well as the Lynnwood City Council Member, Shirley Sutton. Many students said that they were inspired by the words of encouragement they had received, at last they felt they belonged here in Washington and now felt an urgency to "get involved."

    The impact of Dr. Antonio Sanchez’ stunning lecture on the "History and Contributions of Latinos in Washington State" also surprised and inspired our LLI participants, evoking some memorable comments, such as:

    • "For me, the highlight of today is that I’m a part of Washington state, I am important."
    • "I never knew that Latinos are part of Washington state history, that historically we changed our communities."
    • "I am now motivated to become the future of Latino culture."
    • "We are here to be part of the landscape, not to work it!
    • "I can do and help more than I think."
    • "Now everything is possible."
    • "I am amazed to learn that many of us did not cross the border. We were here first and the border crossed us!"

    Ultimately, we would like to offer a special thanks to Edmonds Community College President Dr. Jean Hernandez, who took the time and effort to attend and participate in the program for the entire day. We are all very honored and grateful for your support as we are for the mentoring and expertise of Leadership Skagit, Leadership Snohomish and our EdCC Coordinator, Diana Bustos.
    Leadership Kickoff Set for January 7
    Students, parents and friends are invited to the kickoff of LETI's Latino Leadership Initiative. The event will take place starting at 9 AM, Saturday, January 7 at Everett Community College. For details contact us via the Contacts form above.
    Immigration: Legal and Information Resources
    Recursos de Ley y Información sobre Inmigración

    Your intrepid LETI team has found information that may be useful for all our friends in these uncertain times.

    Su tripulación valiente ha descubierto información que puede ser útil en estos tiempos de inseguridad social.

    Inmigration - Conozca Sus Derechos (Español)
    information for Families (English)
    Immigration - DACA Advisory (English)
    Immigration About NWIRP (EN&ES)
    Immigration-Resources-2016 (English)
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