After almost two years in the planning, the Virginia Tech Lambda Psi Chapter of Sigma Delta Pi, the National Collegiate Hispanic Honor Society, held a special graduation ceremony to celebrate Hispanic/Latino achievement at Virginia Tech. The first of its nature in the history of the university and the region, the ceremony recognized Hispanics and Latinos from all majors, both graduate and undergraduates, who earned their degrees this spring.

This award-winning honor society is in Foreign Languages and Literatures, and is not exclusively for Hispanics but recognizes all who excel in Hispanic classes.

“This ceremony for Hispanics was planned by honor society members - with a lot of multicultural participation,” said Antonio A. Fernández-Vázquez, associate professor of Spanish and faculty adviser for the Lambda Psi Chapter. “We hope that this ceremony becomes a tradition at Virginia Tech, and that it becomes one more way in which to show appreciation for diversity at our university, and more specifically, for Hispanic/Latino students.”

About 75 parents and family attended the 5 p.m. ceremony Thursday in the Squires Recital Salon. A reception followed. Humberto Rodriguez Camilloni, professor of Architecture, was the guest speaker.

Students were awarded a unique medallion that can be worn with their academic regalia. About 2 inches in diameter, the medallion was designed by officers from the Lambda Psi chapter, a professor from English, and the chair of the Hispanic caucus. It has VPI and SU around the border, olive branches symbolizing peace, a lantern to represent knowledge, and inscripted with two letters – G and H, (which are the same in Latin and Spanish) Gesta Hispana, meaning deeds or accomplishments.