Connecting our world at UW Medicine

Hispanic Heritage Month

Celebrating the history, diverse cultures and contributions from the Latinx and Hispanic communities. 

Theme for 2022

This year’s theme is: “Unidos (United): Inclusivity for a Stronger Nation.” The theme recognizes that communities and this country are stronger when we make sure all voices are welcomed and represented. It also recognizes and celebrates the vast diversity and different perspectives within Hispanic and Latinx communities.

History of Latinx and Hispanic Heritage Month

Hispanic American Heritage Month is from Sept. 15 through Oct. 15 each year. It was first held in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week and expanded to a month-long observance in 1988. While other cultural observance months start on the first of the month, there is a reason this one doesn’t. Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua all gained independence on Sept. 15; plus, Mexico’s Independence Day is Sept. 16 and Chile’s is Sept. 18. Though the official name of the month does not include Latinx, making a distinction between Hispanic and Latinx communities is important because they are not the same. Hispanic refers to people who have ancestry in or are from a Spanish-speaking country, whereas Latinx refers to people who have ancestry in or are from a Latin American country.

Usage of the term Latinx

Even though we use “Latinx,” it is important to note that some people within the community do not like or identify with the term. In fact, a Pew Research Center survey from 2020 found that only 3% of people in the community use “Latinx” to describe themselves and that it is primarily accepted among young women. Despite this, UW Medicine chose to use “Latinx” to be inclusive of people who identify outside of the gender binary of male and female. There is currently not another widely recognized term that has this inclusivity; however, we recognize that this term may not be a good fit for everyone and are committed to continuing to research alternate terms.

Digital assets and posters

Email signature

Celebrate Latinx and Hispanic Heritage Month and support your colleagues by adding an icon to your UW Medicine email signature.

Somos (“we are”) UW Medicine email signature icon.

Visit the UW Medicine brand site to download the signature. If you need instructions on how add an email signature, visit one of the following Microsoft Office support pages. 

Zoom background

Visit the UW Medicine brand site to download the background.


Download a PDF of the poster.


The hospital cafeterias will be serving special meals in celebration of Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month. You can also try making a special meal at home using these recipes provided by our hospital chefs.