Aaron Van Oosterhout, Ph.D., is a visiting assistant professor at Hope College in Holland, Michigan. He has taught world history and both European and Latin American cultural heritage courses at this small, selective liberal-arts institution since January 2015. Aaron also continues to present his research at various colloquia in west Michigan. He has published numerous articles on Mexican history, and is currently working on a book.
Aaron also serves on the International Relations Commission for the City of Holland. In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, he has helped orchestrate civic events and has given multiple presentations on topics ranging from Mexican film to the history of Holland’s sister city, Querétaro. Furthermore, he was recently selected to head the commission’s subcommittee on economic development.
At Lighthouse Immigrant Advocates, Aaron works as a Spanish translator and educator. On a part-time basis, he translates legal documents and trains other personnel in Spanish translation. Aaron comes to this position after a decade using his Spanish fluency in a variety of professional capacities. He worked as a Spanish-English translator for InterCare in 2003. Later that year, he taught English as a Second Language (ESL) in a prison in Cholula, Puebla, Mexico. After returning to the United States, Aaron continued that work at La Casa de Amistad in South Bend, Indiana. He has also worked as a correspondent for regional publications such as the Grand Rapids Press, the Herald-Palladium, and the South Bend Tribune, where he occasionally covered Latino and immigrant businesses.