As a motivational speaker and poet, Reyes is known for his ability to combine history, current events and performance into a fusion of education and entertainment. His work acknowledges both the negative conditions in which many Latino youth find themselves in and in the transformation of those experiences into positive images of motivation. Through spoken word, and through many of his workshops he challenges students to critically examine their world. By using his words as a tool for discussion and creativity, his hope is that young people come away with an inspiration to consciously create art and become active agents of change in their community.
All workshops and performances can be tailored for younger audiences with langue appropriate content.
Dream Bigger Reach Higher
Goal: To have participants to become critical thinkers and encourage them to be agents of change.
• Youth will create their own personal mission statement
• Affirms personal culture and awareness of others cultures
• Participants will identify own goals
• Serves as a motivation, in identifying goals
• Motivates participants to become active agents of change
• Encourages and promotes critical thinking and leadership
• Examines solutions to overcome peer pressure obstacles
(I.e. drugs, alcohol and violence)
Mexican/Chican@ Identity & History - Spoken Word
Goal: Examines contemporary Chicano identity
• Delves into contemporary themes; immigration, globalization, &
• Provides historical experiences of Chican@ and Mexicans in the U.S.
• Creates an awareness about Mexican and Chicano identity
and cultureusing poetry themed around such historical
figures as Emilinao Zapata Frida Kahlo, & the Zapatista
Multiculturalism as a Culture
Goal: Understanding the history of multiculturalism
• Encourages self-love and appreciation of others
• Dispelling myths of people of color, to encourage deeper thinking
• Incorporates poetry dedicated to a wide variety of political figures
and historical movements such as Malcom X, Che Guevara,
Martin Luther King and Lolita Lebron
Puerto Rican Poems of Solidarity
Goal: Examines the current state of Puerto Rico and the connection
with the U.S and Latin America
• Reflects on historical Puerto Rican figures such as Lolita Lebron,
Albizu Campos, Oscar Lopez Rivera and Filiberto Ojeda Rios
• Discuss the current progressive work being done in the United States
• Examines cases of Puerto Rican political prisoners and the campaign for their release
Take It Higher Than Just Higher Education
Goal: Examines the characteristics of a critical thinker
• Critical analysis of being “schooled” vs educated
• Examines micro-aggressions experienced as a person of color
• Discuss solutions to bridging the gap
• Encourages movement to bring about positive change
• Call to action college to students to reinvest in building community
(on and off campus)
For many of us summer is not a time of vacation but a time to build the skills and knowledge of our students and faculty. It is also a time to recruit the next group of inspiring individuals to our campuses and organizations and acclimate them into student life. Reyes is offering a variety of summer institutes to help students find their creative voices, while developing skills in critical thinking, leadership, campus organizing (both event and campaign), multi-cultural education, social justice issues, and positive conflict resolution.
All institutes are 2-4 days in length, with topics and themes can be mixed and matched to best fit the needs of your campus.
All workshops include the follow components:
Artistic Creativity Development, Technology Skills, Critical Thinking,
Leadership Building, Campus/Community Organizing Skills, Multi-Cultural Education, Social Justice Analysis, and Positive Conflict Resolution
Regular workshop time frame:
Duration: 45-60 minutes
Summer Institute time frame:
Duration: 3 hours, 2-4 Days
Combine what works for you into a 4 day institute of 3 hours a day
A) Dream Bigger Reach Higher:
Developing goals, building self-esteem, discovering the characteristics of a critical thinker and identifying the qualities of a leader, is what this workshop is all about. Using their own words to develop and create a mission statement that fits who they are, students will participate in workshops, exercises and discussions to create a plan and mission to help guide them in a positive direction and help them create solutions that work.
B) Planning Successful Events:
This workshop helps organizations and departments develop best practices on how to plan successful events on campus. This includes creating original flyers, identifying your target audience, effective promoting, talent resources and creating meaningful linkages to your local high schools and community organizations. Also included is an example “Day Of” checklist to help guide you to a successful event.
C) Organizer’s Tool Box - Arts, Activism and Community Organizing:
Understand the basics to organizing around issues that are important to your student organization or department. This series includes, selecting issues that are relevant, selecting partners, identifying structures of power, identifying generative themes and finding solutions that work for your community or campus. Workshops will also help participants learn how be effective doorknockers.
D) Poetry with a Purpose:
This workshop will help participants understand the tradition of the spoken word and its historical use. We will visit some the greatest poets, focusing on people of color and women. You will find your voice and experiment with different forms and themes of poetry. Participants will develop their own themes and create poems through workshops, discussion and creative writing exercises with a focus on social justice and poetry as a tool for organizing. This series will end with a poetry open mic for all to share their work.
E) Theater of the Oppressed:
Using theater that tells all our stories as well as your individual story is what this workshop accomplishes. Participants will learn about the traditional forms of theater but will also learn about non-traditional theater such as Guerilla and Puppet Theater. Creating stories that are participant inspired, students will learn about set design, costumes, directing and acting. Most importantly, students will learn how to tell their stories in an inexpensive and effective way.
F) Video and Audio Production for social media (Youtube, Facebook, Twitter):
Producing, editing and marketing your videos and audio for the Internet and beyond. Using video and audio techniques in both conventional and unconventional ways to help your organization or department reach and highlight your yearly accomplishments. We will learn about media from a historical perspective and how we can create an alternative that tells our story.
G) Photography Tells Your Story:
A picture is worth a thousand words. Participants will learn the technical skills and aesthetics of photography from framing to cropping. Using simple digital cameras, participants will learn how to use photographs to bring their stories to life.
H) The Art of the Silk Screen - Screens, T-shirts, Posters and Stencils:
We are constantly bombarded with propaganda. This workshop aims to help organizations and participants find cheap and affordable ways of creating anything from 8 ½ x 11 posters to t-shirt designs. Students will also examine the role of propaganda in our society and will learn how it can be used to benefit their own objectives.