Teaching International Speaker Series presents Sheila I. Vélez Martínez

MCKEESPORT, Pa. — Penn State Greater Allegheny’s Teaching International (TI) program hosted a Speakers’ Series event on April 3 in the Ostermayer Room. The TI program brings local speakers and scholars to the McKeesport-based campus to facilitate conversations with students, faculty and staff on many topics.

This year TI focused on Puerto Rico and social movements. Professor Sheila I. Vélez Martinez spoke to a crowd of more than 50 campus and community members discussing how a natural disaster, such as Hurricane Maria in 2017, can affect the culture and lifestyles of Puerto Ricans. 

“I greatly enjoyed that the students were attentive, and the questions were inquisitive,” said Vélez. “I am happy to see that the students were interested, engaged, and I am looking forward to coming back.” 

Vélez, a native from the island, is the Jack and Lovell Olender Professor of Asylum Refugee and Immigration Law and the director of clinical programs at the University of Pittsburgh’s School of Law.

Vélez has written on issues related to immigration, Latino and Latina Critical Legal Theory and legal education. She has also published works regarding women and migration in Puerto Rico and is currently working on the challenges related to the displacement of Puerto Ricans after the 2017 hurricanes.

Those interested in the TI program can learn more at www.greaterallegheny.psu.edu/academics/teaching-international.