Doña Ana Community College will welcome students and advisers this week from a technological post-secondary school in Lerdo, Durango, Mexico with tours, classes and a meeting with the Las Cruces City Council to help strengthen the long-standing cultural exchange, according to a DACC news release.
Twenty students and five faculty and staff from Centro de Bachillerato Technológico Industrial y de Servicios Número 4 (CBTis 4) of Ciudad Lerdo, Durango, Mexico, will arrive Wednesday for six days of activities designed to foster understanding of cultures. Students and staff will stay with volunteer families in the Mesilla Valley. Next spring, students, faculty and staff from DACC will visit CBTis 4 and tour the Lerdo area to complete the yearly exchange.
The guests will visit Gadsden High School to assist students who are studying Spanish on Thursday. Official welcoming ceremonies will also be at the Doña Ana Student Resource (DASR) Commons Area of the East Mesa Campus, featuring comments from Las Cruces Mayor Ken Miyagishima, DACC President Renay Scott and other dignitaries that evening.
Over the next four days, the visitors will attend classes, tour local destinations, travel to Albuquerque to tour the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center and attend the Las Cruces City Council meeting in Las Cruces Council Chambers at 1 p.m. on Monday. The council is expected to recognize the students as part of the Sister Cities program between Lerdo and Las Cruces.
This exchange has developed over the past 32 years, the news release stated. The relationship between the two schools precedes the designation of Lerdo as a sister city of the City of Las Cruces by seven years.
Located 550 miles south of Las Cruces, Ciudad Lerdo has several similarities to the City of the Crosses, according to the news release. Both have agriculture as a major industry and both include festivals celebrating agricultural products including wine. Lerdo sits near the Nazas River which has been compared to the Rio Grande that runs through the Mesilla Valley.