A mural with the most important character of Segundo Barrio can be found at E. Father Rahm Ave. (Azenett Cornejo/Borderzine.com)

Segundo Barrio: a ‘living history’ lesson

EL PASO — In the heart of El Paso is Segundo Barrio, a port of entry to the United States. It’s the first community people see when they cross the border from Juarez, Mexico. Located on the city’s south side, Segundo Barrio is home to more than 8,000 people, of whom 50.8 percent are U.S. citizens, 13.7 percent are naturalized citizens and 35.5 percent are non-citizens, according to City of El Paso statistics. Yolanda Chávez Leyva, chair of the University of Texas at El Paso history department, calls Segundo Barrio the “heart of the Mexican diaspora.”

“El Segundo Barrio is one of the most historic barrios in the United States,” Chávez Leyva said. “[It] grew out of the migration of mexicanos to the United States going back to the 1880s and it’s been the starting point for thousands of families across the United States.”

The neighborhood is “very important” to El Paso, she said, because it is where the urbanization of the city began.

A Campus Inside A Barrio Wrapped in a Metroplex

EL PASO — The future of Segundo Barrio is not white or brown, but green. Such is the view of Centro de Salud Familiar La Fe, a health and human services organization that contends economic power will decide the fate of this historic neighborhood in south central El Paso. It is a decidedly pragmatic approach for a non-profit born in the grassroots movements of the 1960’s and grounded in social justice. A visit to the La Fe “campus” reveals an organization that appears to be thriving. In 1992, La Fe consisted of one health clinic, 65 employees and a budget of $3 million, mostly federal funds.

Downtown El Paso as seen from the Paseo del Norte International Bridge. (Sergio Chapa/Borderzine.com)

Downtowners Express Their Hopes for El Paso

EL PASO— A taxi driver, a shopper and merchants from downtown El Paso share their perspectives of the city’s history and their hopes for its future. The following video, audio and slideshow presentations were produced by the following participants in of the Dow Jones Multimedia Training Academy held recently at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP): Jessica Retis, Bradford Owen, Mark Albertson and instructor Doug Mitchell. Downtown El Paso Merchants Tell Their Story

flee market at downtown El Paso

El Paso’s Voices on the 100th Anniversary of the Mexican Revolution

EL PASO — The year 2010 marks the 100th anniversary of the Mexican Revolution. In the following video, audio and slideshow presentations, El Pasoans give their views on the impact of the Revolution and the lasting meaning it still holds. Dow Jones Multimedia Training Academy students, Elio Leturia, Elizabeth Marsh and John Freeman and instructor Lourdes Cueva Chacón, thank Mr. Roberto Rodríguez Hernández, Cónsul General of México in El Paso, the consulate staff, Dr. Kate Bonansinga, Director of the Stanlee and Gerald Rubin Center for the Visual Arts, and the citizens of El Paso and Ciudad Juárez who shared their voices. Voices from El Paso

More than 30,000 women bowlers converge on El Paso

EL PASO, Texas — The United States Bowling Congress will wrap up its women’s international bowling championship on July 3 following a four-month-long tournament at the El Paso Convention and Performing Arts Center. More than 30,000 women bowlers in nearly 6,000 teams from around the world will have competed in continuous play from March 27 to July 3. A year-long conversion of the convention center for the 100-day event created 48 bowling lanes and 20,000 feet of exhibit space. The USBC allowed members of the Dow Jones Multimedia Training Academy at the University of Texas at El Paso to interview, photograph and videotape participants and events of the tournament during the week of June 7. The following video, audio and slideshow presentations are productions of the students of the academy, Kirk Notarianni, Robert Muilenberg, and Gina Germani and instructor Kate Gannon.

Border Patrol officer, Ralph Gomez, talks to reporter Seok Kang at the international border. (Christopher Karadjov/Borderzine.com)

A Day with Border Patrol Agents in El Paso, TX

EL PASO, Texas — Border patrol agents deal with everyday conflicts and apprehensions in the border areas. Chris Karadjov, Donna Pazdera, and Seok Kang tagged along with two border patrol agents, Joe Romero and Ralph Gomez. Contrary to what non-border residents may think, the boundary between the United States and Mexico is not a straight line or a simple division between the two places. The border bisects desert, mountains and urban areas. Each type of terrain calls for simple fencing in desert areas, tall steel mesh in more populated areas and plain rocks markers in mountainous areas or open desert, for example.