How diverse are we?


Erik Hernandez, Staff Reporter

Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and Latin America are miles, seas, and oceans apart, yet the cultures of these 5 vibrantly rich regions are infused with plenty of distinct characteristics and thrive and intertwine with one another inside of a moderately small town named Schuyler, Nebraska. Schuyler used to be a demographically caucasian town. The minorities that have now become the majority came and established their lives in Schuyler originally due to plentiful job opportunities brought by Cargill, the town’s largest employer.

The demographic switch started in the 1990’s. According to Jan Kracl, an ELL teacher at Schuyler Central High School, the first non-english speaking people started to arrive in 1990. Schuyler was already a fascinatingly diverse town, its diversity was in the numerous European cultures that thrived here. Schuyler was a town built and founded by Irish, German, and Czech settlers.

In recent years, the diversity in Schuyler has been amplified to embrace people with origins in places spanning from Asia to the Congo. Jan Kracl stated that,”Schuyler now has students from Guatemala, Colombia, Mexico, Somalia, Ethiopia, Honduras, El Salvador, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Puerto Rico, Cuba, and China.” In addition she estimates that the languages spoken in Schuyler are between ten and twelve, not including the regional and ethnic dialects. Having a multicultural environment is beneficial and serves as an advantage to learn about different cultures, traditions, and languages.