Minority Student Orgs

Minority+student+organizations+strive+to+create+an+environment+where+students+feel+supported+and+culturally+represented.

Minority student organizations strive to create an environment where students feel supported and culturally represented.

Student organizations work to build community and create an environment where students feel supported and culturally represented.

President of the Chinese Culture and Charity Club, Matthew Trecek, a senior in the College of Arts & Sciences, said that they want American and Chinese international students on campus to engage with one another.

“The purpose of the Chinese Culture and Charity Club is to expand the exposure and reach of Chinese culture on campus at Marquette and into the greater Milwaukee community,” Trecek said.

As the co-president of the Latin American Student Organization, Giselle Martinez, a senior in the College of Engineering, said that LASO cultivates a community that serves as a social network and support system. Martinez also said that LASO celebrates and encourages the growth of Latin American culture in the Marquette community.

“Being a college student, I think a lot of people can agree that finding your community on campus is important to feeling a sense of belonging. For me, it has always been important to create an environment where students can get to know others and recognize that we are all in the same boat and experience similar struggles,” Martinez said.

Vraj Patel, a junior in the College of Health Sciences, is the co-president of the Indian Student Association.

Patel said that the ISA wants to create a social network that builds relationships and displays Indian heritage and culture for its members.

“We aim to build this social network through the events we host. This builds a sense of community within the club. We have already extended this community by reaching out to other cultural student organizations,” Patel said.

Trecek said that building a community brings people together and creates a safe, inclusive environment.

“We’re not only Marquette students, but we are also a group that cares about a common interest: that being a dedication to the spread of Chinese culture around campus. Building community is also important because it can make individuals feel safe, understood and represented at a big school like Marquette,” Trecek said.

The Chinese Culture and Charity Club works alongside the Chinese Students and Scholars Association to host an event to celebrate the Lunar New Year. Trecek said that the club hosts events like this not only for Chinese students, but also for those who are interested in Chinese culture.

“This event usually attracts hundreds of students. They come for the food, but they stay for the cultural presentations, discussions with Chinese students, and impactful stories from Chinese and Americans alike,” Trecek said.

Outside of the Lunar New Year event, the Chinese Culture and Charity Club hosts bi-weekly events. One of the events is the Chinese program social mixers, which is in conjunction with the department of languages, literatures and cultures. 

Martinez said that the Latin American Student Organization stresses the importance of participating in social activities.

“Another way we work on building community is to collaborate with other organizations on campus. We recognize that members are involved in many ways on campus and thus make it a point, as an organization, to connect and build strong relationships with student organizations,” Martinez said.

LASO has partnered with sororities and fraternities to host events such as Fiesta de Noche and Día de Los Muertos.

The Indian Student Association welcomes all students to its events, Patel said, to encourage integration despite cultural differences.

“Our goal is to build a community with all Marquette students by hosting events that are open to everybody on campus where we can create a melting pot of cultures and accept each other despite our different backgrounds,” Patel said.

The Indian Student Association partnered with Late Night Marquette to host Diwali Night on Nov. 16. Next semester, they will host their annual Holi celebration and their cultural show. Holi is a celebration marking the beginning of spring. Through these events, the Indian Student Association hopes to strengthen the bonds of the Marquette community, Patel said.

“As an organization of mostly minority students, we make it our mission to represent the underrepresented and allow everybody’s voices to be heard,” Patel said.

This story was written by Hannah Hernandez. She can be reached at hannah.hernandez@marquette.edu.