The Hispanic Student Union (HSU) held its fifth meeting on Mar. 4, during which they discussed their plans for the club and engaged in bonding activities to further unite union members.
The HSU has successfully brought together a close-knit community within the school environment that consists of a diverse group of Hispanics and Latinos. “My favorite part of being a member of the HSU is getting to meet new people and finding out about their backgrounds. The union really brings people together and I like being able to find ways to help out others in Hispanic or Latin countries,” freshman Julia Santos said.
The HSU provides an opportunity to its members to make fast friends and get to know new people. “It’s super fun to get to know my Hispanic and Latino peers. We work on building each other up a lot, which is awesome. We’ve gotten super close really fast and it’s been a quick transition from being strangers to friends,” senior and union president Nicole-Antoinette Urbina-Ruiz said.
Because the HSU creates such a close community, it has become an outlet for student expression. “All students want to be seen and heard. I think that that is easier for some than others, so clubs like this provide an additional resource for students to express themselves,” English teacher Lindsey Vance said.
In addition to their weekly Wednesday meetings during lunch, the HSU aims to raise awareness at the school about the diverse aspects of Hispanic culture by coordinating events like an upcoming cultural showcase. Much like the recent Black Student Union showcase that was held, this night will provide an opportunity for students to display their singing, dancing, poetry and artwork, all in a way that celebrates Hispanic culture. The event will also feature a potluck, which will allow students to gain exposure to different cultural foods. Auditions for the event will be held on Mar. 25.
The union helps raise awareness about Hispanic culture by welcoming new members with open arms, including those who aren’t Latino. “Anyone can join the union. The purpose is to bring friendships and bonds amongst Hispanics, but others who want to observe and appreciate the culture and learn about the dynamic can join as well. We don’t turn anyone away,” Urbina-Ruiz said.
Student unions not only have a beneficial influence on its members, but also help better the school. “The HSU has a positive impact on the school community because it provides an outlet for students that embraces their individuality and shared experiences,” Vance said.