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By Kimberly Escobar, The Diamondback

As University of Maryland students head into Jiménez Hall for their foreign language classes this semester, they might see stickers with three red dots scattered on walls or doors around the building.

The stickers are courtesy of the Spanish and Portuguese department's Red Dot campaign, designed to raise awareness, celebrate the department's identity and illustrate the pervasiveness of the languages in society.

"We want to raise awareness of how important language and culture proficiency and the humanities are," said Eyda Merediz, Spanish and Portuguese department chairwoman, who was involved in the campaign's planning.

Interested students can interact with the campaign by asking their professors for stickers, which they can then post across the campus themselves, Merediz said. A second portion of the campaign, which features the image of a tree bearing fruit that symbolizes interconnection and the pursuit of knowledge, will be unveiled by the department later this semester.

The department hopes the campaign will create a recognizable brand and visual identity for it, said Laura Demaria, a Spanish professor, and that it will highlight students' daily interactions with the languages.

"The stickers are a way of intervening," Demaria said. "We wanted to show our students that these public spaces have narratives and stories related to the Spanish and Portuguese culture and department itself."

Spanish is everywhere on the campus — you can go to Stamp Student Union or even the library and hear Spanish, Demaria said. The stickers are designed as visual reminders of the importance of Spanish diversity and culture.

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