MEChA engages with the community

By Tania Nunez, Contributor

Colorful balloons, crafts and bilingual books were all displayed decoratively at the Cheney Public Library on Monday to celebrate Día de los Niños (Children’s Day), one of many annual events put on by MEChA that celebrates children and promotes literacy.

MEChA, an acronym for the Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano/a de Aztlán (Movement of Chicano/a Students of Aztlán), is a student organization that promotes higher education and community involvement while also focusing on politics, culture and history.

“I think it’s necessary for people to advocate for the community,” junior Angelica Garcia-Macias said. “I think MEChA does a really good job doing that and really bringing into perspective those issues.”

Other annual events put on by MEChA include Día de la Amistad (Friendship Day), Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), the May Day March and the Izkalli Calmecac Student Conference.

MEChA’s events celebrate Latino/a culture and promote higher education, but others, like the May Day March, tackle issues such as immigration.

“We do the Izkalli Calmecac conference and that is a conference that brings 300 students from all over Washington to a three-day workshop,” co-chair Sarahi Gutierrez said. “We also do [the] May Day March and that’s [an] immigration reform march. We try to get our Congress and our representatives to make sure that they’re supporting their immigrant community.”

MEChA also makes it a priority to collaborate with many other organizations on campus such as the Native American Students Association, the Black Student Union and Eagle Pride.

“I feel like [MEChA] is always really involved. I feel like every time I go to the meetings, they’re like ‘oh NASA’s having this, a sorority or fraternity is doing this,’” junior Hilda Celestino said.

MEChA strives to serve as a home away from home for students where they can feel welcomed at any time.

“We really hope that [students] find the type of community that they wouldn’t find back home,” said Gutierrez. “We try to make sure that they have someone that supports them, that understands what they’re going through as a first-generation student.”  

All students are welcome to attend MEChA’s next meeting which will take place May 7 at 4 p.m. in the Interim Multicultural Center located at Showalter 303.