Heated debate at A.S. meeting over MEChA funding

A.S. approved funding $1,000 to Moviemento Estudantil Chicana/o de Aztlan (MEChA) for the Raza Youth Conference Tuesday after three failed motions on the floor.

MEChA originally requested $1,300 from A.S. to pay for the transportation of high school students from underprivileged communities to enable them to attend the event.

A large group of MEChA members and supporters spoke during open forum to argue for the additional funding.

“It will be a reflection on A.S. and their priority for higher education in their A.S. budgeting,” said Raza Youth Conference Coordinator Diego Paniagua.

MEChA is hosting the event at CSUN and caters to youth in the greater Los Angeles region including the Antelope Valley, parts of Orange County and Ventura County.

MEChA’s focus with the Raza Youth Conference is to raise awareness to students who lack resources and education about the ins and outs of getting into college. They provide information on the application process, options for undocumented people and workshops to strengthen cultural identity and cohesion.

“This is a direct promotion of higher education. The funding is crucial because lots of communities suffer from low funding and it’s hard for them to get students to CSUN,” said Sergio Baynori, Raza Youth Conference co-director.

Some senators argued they were not in support of providing funding for people who are not CSUN constituents. They explained there are hundreds of CSUN clubs and organizations  that frequently come to A.S. asking for funding. There was an emphasis placed on reserving A.S. funding for activities that directly affect current CSUN students, not prospective students.

I don’t think it makes sense to make an exception to bring people on campus,” said Senator William Ryder.

Discordance filled the room and a frustrated member of the audience left as motions were struck down by the voting body for both $1,200 and $1,100.

“Keep in mind that 36 percent of your constituency is of Latina/o culture,” said Senator Laquae  Felix. Financial consistency was reiterated as most clubs and organizations are given a cap of $3,000 per event.

“I remember allocating $20,000 to a hockey team to play off campus. That has nothing to do with higher education,” said Senator Brande Hookfin. “Even though it was a national competition I don’t remember it being televised.”

MEChA members stood in solidarity and filled half the room as the heated debate between A.S. senators went on for half an hour before a decision was made.
“We need more student representation to hold them (A.S.) accountable,” M.E.Ch.A. member Jose Martinez said.

  • ClaimChecker

    Golly, a stunning, relevant statement, Csulb Right Wing.  Ad hom attacks are so effective, said no one ever.  Certainly, there are other boards for you to troll, no?  We hope your blood pressure is lowering.  Where did you learn your “facts?”  Attend many MeCha meetings?  Share with us the “research” on which you base your amazingly flimsy attacks.  Name calling…so, so weak.  Does it trigger sad memories on the playgrounds?

     # :-(   <—- sad face for your mind.  

    (p.s.  It's unlikely CSULB claims you as one of their own.  You really don't belong many places with your rage, do you?)


    Now go take a nap.  (BTW, you also misspelled your profanity.  It must be hard typing with one finger.)

    • leave it to a racist “la raza” supporter to try to turn facts into hate…Take your lies down the road trash!

  • @ Johnny “mechista” Ramirez Mecha is a racist hate group and deserves 0 money from the AS. In addition MEChA is a political org that advocates for open boarders and inflicting unnecessary and unwanted financial liability, NO SE PUEDE to illegal alien support groups such as mecha. 

  • Mecha is a racist institution that seeks to reclaim the US southwest for Chicanos only, fcuk that! Go ask that racist pig mechista Dr. Acuna for the money. 

  • BurgerLess

    Why doesn’t Moviemento Estudantil Chicana/o de Aztlan (MEChA) for the Raza just raise the money for themselves. It’s everything for La Raza and nothing for anyone else anyway. 

  • VladLenin

    Encouraging “all” kids to attend College is setting [many of] them up for failure.

    Some kids don’t have the aptitude, or personal fortitude to handle the educational rigors of Higher Education. The premise that “all kids” should track to college is a fallacy established by Higher Ed.

    Standards have been lowered, to allow for students who might otherwise be better served tracked towards a trade, or skilled profession. Many are sold on college, take on Student Loan debt, don’t graduate(CSUN 48%), and then are left with no degree, and debt.

    This tracking of “all” students to college, is a disservice to both the achievers, and non-achievers.

    Peace Out!


    • ClaimChecker

      Vlad, here you bring up some relevant and true points.  Not every kid is cut out for academic work, just as not every kid is cut out for mechanical work.  What’s less impressive, however, is the implication that those students MEChA seeks to bring to this event are among those lacking “aptitude” or “personal fortitude” to handle academics. 

      Many never get the opportunity to visit a campus and see with their own eyes the challenges and opportunities it provides, often relying on rumor or biased, predetermined “counseling.”  MEChA is simply getting involved with their community and seeking to extend and maintain involvement of this institution with their community, something many higher level institutions don’t do.  MEChA provides the tours and activities for free.  Presentations made by professors are provided free of charge.  Funding to safely transport these students to promote our campus, at a relatively inexpensive cost by A.S. standards, isn’t unreasonable. 

      So please, limit the broad brush strokes. 

      • VladLenin


        I have no qualms with your, or MEChA’s efforts.

        My beef is the broader academic falsehood that has built-in failure. Those most negatively affected by this falsehood are many of the children that you’re reaching out to. 

        Further, I believe that it’s critical to “internalize” one’s circumstances, and stop “externalizing” them.

        What is responsible for a 50% CSUN graduation rate?
        How many of the 50% that don’t graduate have taken Student Loans?
        What opportunities exists for college drop-outs?

        There is no shame in trades. Why do we not track some students to skilled work, rather than to college.

        IMO, we do a disservice to the good students(aptitude/fortitude), as instructors cannot focus their attention on raising these kids beyond their current(abysmal(Internationally)) abilities.  We also perform a disservice for the not-so-good students, as we suggest that they can achieve, but then don’t hold them accountable to that standard, but continue to blame external factors for their demise.

        Peace out!


  • Johnny Ramirez

    What the A.S. governing body might not be aware of is the historical and contemporary role that Latin@ Youth Empowerment Conference have on increasing the awareness and access of low income, 1st generation college student communities.  These events introduce underrepresented students to the culture, information, and self actualization that attending a university is possible.  Since CSUN is a “Hispanic serving institution,” it would seem that funding buses to transport high school students & parents to a free Saturday event falls under a central aim of target population.  Bottom line, the Chicana/o Latino/a Educational pipeline (Solorzano & Yosso 2005) indicates that out of 100 elementary students 48 students (young Latino boys disproportionately) are pushed out of high school.  According to a Harvard Civil Rights in Education Report (Orfield, 2008) in LAUSD, the pushout rates for Latino boys in particular are 51 percent by the 10th grade.  The report indicates that they are pushed out to continuation school, then they attend a probationary type school called Community Day School (CDS), then pushed out to the streets; which studies unfortunately indicate that from the streets they are incarcerated. (See School-to-Prison pipeline).  I say all this to encourage AS leadership to remember that funding concerts like Lupe Fiasco (one of my favorites, I am not hate’n) should be secondary to funding outreach efforts to students of color from marginalized communities.  Just think, this MEChA Youth Empowerment event will result in the educational empowerment of youth that are struggling to discover how education can make a difference in their lives and in the world, more importantly, this event will create new dreams and goal setting of young Latina/os who will want to  attend CSUN because of having the opportunity to ride a bus to campus.  That’s whats Up!!! 

    • VladLenin

      Bottom line, the Chicana/o Latino/a Educational pipeline (Solorzano & Yosso 2005) indicates that out of 100 elementary students 48 students (young Latino boys disproportionately) are pushed out of high school.

      Pushed out of school? No one is pushed out of school. Students are asked to “strive” to maintain a pace that educates them. Programs are in place “to help” students who have fallen behind. Our “collective” educational system has deterioriated over the past couple decades.

      Why are Asians, in these same school systems succeeding, where the Latino student is failing?

      Why must groups like this “externalize” the problems within their community. Is it possible that the students, and/or the parents maintain some personal culpability for their plight?

      • ClaimChecker

        Vlad, the “model minority” Asian defense went out years ago, and you seem to be operating under an assumption that all groups have the same experience with their education.

        • VladLenin

          I’m not referencing the “same experience”, but the same opportunity.  Poor people, in poor communities are at a disadvantage, but that is in large part due to the lack of parental involvement both with their children, and with the quality, and demands on the school. That MECHa is trying to help students is a good thing.

          That “some” Whites, Asians, Blacks, Hispanics overcome their circumstances to achieve, is testament that anyone can overcome those circumstances.

          My point, is that until the Latino and Black communities take some responsibility for their own successes, or lack thereof, they will not progresss. It is NOT ALWAYS external factors that determine success, otherwise none within given communities would advance.