Zita Arocha

Professor Emeritus, University of Texas El Paso

Zita Arocha is a bilingual journalist and was associate professor of practice in the UTEP Department of Communication from 2002 to 2019. She is founder of borderzine.com, a multimedia web magazine that prepares Hispanic college journalists for jobs in 21st century newsrooms. For over 20 years she worked as a reporter for various news outlets like The Washington Post, The Miami Herald, The Miami News and The Tampa Times. She was executive director of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists from 1993-1997, served as its   interim director in 2021, and was training coordinator for the Freedom Forum’s Chips Quinn Scholars Program from 2000-02. A freelance contributor to various national publications including The New York Times, USA Today and Los Angeles times, she earned a master’s degree in English and comparative literature from the University of South Florida, and an MFA in bilingual creative writing at UTEP. Her memoir, Guajira, a Cuban-American Childhood, won a Mayborn literary excellence award in 2013. And excerpts from the manuscript have been published in the literary journals Rigorous and Rio Grande Review. She also leads student trips to Cuba, the land of her birth.