Student Diversity is back with Noche de Familia celebration

On Mar. 5, Washington State University Vancouver’s Student Diversity Center brought back the annual Noche de Familia event. According to Cesar Moreno, student intern of Student Diversity, the main purpose of the Noche de Familia event is to engage with the Latino community, especially parents. The event is primarily targeted for the benefit of potential future WSU Vancouver students, including middle school students, high school students and students currently attending community college that want to transfer.

Although the event in Spanish, an interpreter was available for translation. Moreno said that having the event in Spanish helped bring WSU Vancouver closer to the Latino community. “That is one way that we [people in Student Diversity and WSU Vancouver staff and faculty] try to be effective in taking WSU Vancouver to a community that deserves more representation on campus.”

Noche de Familia has been running for five years, starting as a small get-together. Moreno said that when the event began, a few families would come to campus and learn about the resources available. It eventually became a bigger event when more Latino families in the Vancouver and Clark County area heard about the event through word of mouth. Last year, the event had set a new high of about 160 attendees, which was surpassed by this year, which had an estimated 230 guests.

Moreno said that variations of the Noche de Familia event exist on other WSU campuses as well. In Pullman, there are several other events that specifically engage the Latino community since there is a bigger Latino population at the Pullman campus. Although there are various versions of the Noche De Familia celebration in other WSU campuses, Moreno believes that WSU Vancouver has “one of the best” celebrations out there.

During this year’s event, families who attend will learn about financial aid, preparing for college, and other difficulties that Latino families face. Other topics include tips on how to save money for college, how to fill out the FAFSA, WSU Vancouver’s admissions requirements, and how to become a successful college student. Moreno said that this event also gives support to future students and at the beginning of their college careers.

Anyone with questions about the Noche de Familia event can contact Cesar Moreno by email at cesar.moreno@email.wsu.edu. The Student Diversity Center is located in the Firstenburg Student Commons and is open from 8:30 a.m to 5 p.m Monday through Friday. They can also be found on Facebook at facebook.com/studentdiversity.

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