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The Dartmouth
March 4, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Romagnolo named Latino adviser

Dean of the College Lee Pelton appointed Yolanda Romagnolo to the position of Latino/Hispanic Adviser to replace Abraham Hunter, who left the College at the end of the summer.

Romagnolo previously worked at the College as the coordinator of the North American Assessment of Environmental Governance Conference in October 1994.

Romagnolo, who works half-time as the adviser, also runs her own law practice in the Upper Valley.

Pelton said "The committee selected Romagnolo because she was exactly what we were looking for -- someone intelligent, someone qualified and someone who knows Dartmouth."

Romagnolo, who started working at the beginning of the month was chosen from among three finalists by a selection committee composed of administrators and students.

Pelton said Romagnolo was well-received by everyone who had a say in the final decision.

James Gallo '99, president of La Alianza Latina, the College's Hispanic students' organization, was one of the students who served on the committee.

"She seemed to be very willing to work with students," Gallo said.

As the adviser to Latino and Hispanic students, Romagnolo is responsible for mentoring, programming, advocacy and consultation for Latino and Hispanic students.

The position was created two years ago to improve the academic experience of Latino and Hispanic students at the College, Pelton said.

Romagnolo said her goal is for students to assimilate into the community while learning more about themselves.

"I'm trying to bridge gaps and make sure that each and every student doesn't fall through the cracks," she said. She also pointed out that she has held the position for only a few days and does not yet know if any "gaps" exist.

Romagnolo said she is here "trying to attract Latino and Hispanic students to use the resources here for them."

Romagnolo said the number of Latino and Hispanic students at the College has been increasing, and she believes an adviser will help the students adjust to the Dartmouth community.

Gallo said Romagnolo can help students by being a mentor, aiding students in selecting classes or just by referring them to the right places.

"The needs of Latino/Hispanic students are different because their backgrounds are different," he said.

One of the programs Romagnolo plans to implement is a gathering of speakers, writers, politicians and musicians to celebrate Latino and Hispanic culture at the College.

"Cultural activities are open to everybody, and there are a lot of ways to immerse yourself in culture here," Romagnolo said. This event will expose all students Latino and Hispanic culture, she said.

She said she also hopes to organize a network of Latino-Hispanic alumni to provide Latino-Hispanic students relevant "connections" to the "real world."

Romagnolo said she wants to create different types of mentoring programs at Dartmouth, including one-on-one peer advising.

She said she will be looking to other programs at the College, such as the Native American House, for ideas.

"I look forward to meeting as many administrators, students, and faculty members as I can," Romagnolo said, "I welcome anyone and everyone -- I have an open door."

Romagnolo said she believes her past experiences will help her to relate to Latino and Hispanic students at the College.

The daughter of a Cuban immigrant who grew up in Miami, Fl., a city that was predominantly Hispanic, Romagnolo said attending Columbia University in New York City was a big adjustment.

She said she began her advising career as a young student when she tutored family members and friends.

After graduating with a degree in music from Columbia University, she attended the Indiana University School of Law where she was president of the Latino Law Student Association.

Romagnolo is a composer and musician. She gives music lessons to community members at the Hopkins Center for the Performing Arts and composes her own pieces, including Latin American-style works.