iCaramba! Latino mag hits stands

A new magazine hitting Yale’s newsstands this week will fill a growing niche at universities throughout the country.

iCaramba U. Magazine, the first national magazine to cater specifically to college-age Latinos, will make its way this week into the hands of students at 100 colleges and universities, including Yale, Harvard and the University of California at Berkeley.

The magazine’s publisher, Anthony Aldano, termed it a “groundbreaking” publication.

“There’s no other college publication out there to cater to [the Latino] market,” said Aldano, who helped create the magazine.

iCaramba U. is the brainchild of LatCom Communications, a media and entertainment company that seeks to tap into the growing “New Generation,” or under-35, Latino population, Aldano said. He added that “New Generation” Latinos account for more than 70 percent of the Latino market.

Aldano said LatCom, which tours nine cities and 45 campuses annually, recognized the potential for a Latino publication during a college tour nearly two years ago. More than 1.5 million college students are Latino, he said.

Over 100,000 copies of the magazine’s first issue, which was available on some college campuses as early as Sept. 15, were distributed, Aldano said. Colleges with high densities of Latino students, as well as 15 high schools, were chosen for distribution.

Although Yale does not have a particularly high percentage of Latino students, Aldano said, the University’s “unique campus” made it a perfect candidate to receive iCaramba U.

“We thought it would be an asset to Yale,” he said.

Assistant Dean Rosalinda Garcia, who heads La Casa Cultural, agreed. On July 20, she signed an contract with the magazine’s editors to distribute 500 copies of the magazine at Yale. The magazine will be shipped to Yale free of charge twice a semester, Aldano said. All costs will be covered by LatCom.

Although Garcia said she does not yet know much about the magazine, she said she is looking forward to receiving the first issue.

“It looks to be great,” she wrote in an e-mail.

While many of the magazine’s features — such as profiles of college students, a question and answer section and a fashion section — are typical in young-adult publications, Aldano said every article is “skewed toward Latino issues.”

All of the articles, which were written by 20 to 30 college students and graduates, are in English. But the magazine is infused with Spanish words that help it connect with its audience, Aldano said. For example, the question and answer section is called “Cafe con leche,” Spanish for coffee with milk, and includes advice on how to use ethnicity as a tool in today’s job market. Actor John Leguizamo, a LatCom partner and spokesperson, is featured in the first issue in an article entitled, “How College Changed His Vida.”

After listening to a description of the magazine, Shelley Rivas ’06, a student coordinator at La Casa Cultural, said a publication that addresses Latino concerns, such as iCaramba U., is necessary.

“Bringing in a magazine [like iCaramba U.] would help strengthen the Latino presence on campus,” she said. “Latino issues should be included not only to educate non-Latinos, but also to educate Latinos.”

The first magazine geared at college-age Latinos will come to campuses across the U.S. this week. The magazine, written in English but sprinkled with Spanish phrases, sought campuses with high Latino populations. Creators hope it will help strengthen Latino student culture and increase presence on campus.
Courtesy ICaramba.U
The first magazine geared at college-age Latinos will come to campuses across the U.S. this week. The magazine, written in English but sprinkled with Spanish phrases, sought campuses with high Latino populations. Creators hope it will help strengthen Latino student culture and increase presence on campus.

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