by Abelardo de la Peña Jr.
- If you’re happy and you know it, say “¡Orale!” (Hooray). A study shows that bicultural teens who actively embrace their Latino culture, and whose parents become more involved in U.S. culture, are happier and healthier.
- The findings of a study by the University of North Carolina’s Latino Acculturation and Health Project showed that teens who maintain strong ties to their Latino culture perform better academically and adjust more easily socially (UNC.edu 6.23.09).
- Conversely, as parents become more involved in U.S. culture, their teen children’s social problems, aggression and anxiety decreased while peer relations, forming friendships and staying engaged in school improved.
WHAT THIS MEANS TO BUSINESS
- The large and growing Latino youth population is playing an increasingly important role in American culture. Actively maintaining ties to home-country culture and traditions serves as a welcome balance from the stress of acculturation.
- Brands aiming their products and services at Latino teens in either language should balance their messaging to extol positive attributes of both U.S. and home-country culture.