The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Filipino students celebrate their roots and rock on

CSUN’s Filipino-American Student Association jump-started their first meeting of the year with a “Rock On” theme Thursday night at the Shoshone room located in the Satellite Student Union building.

Students from other college-based Filipino organizations, which included UCLA, Cal. Poly, Cal. State Fullerton and Loyola Marymount University, came to support their peers.

“I’m really big on student involvement and making connections with other students,” said freshmen Justin Evangelista, a health science major who handles public relations for FASA. “I heard it was one of the most active clubs on campus.”

The American national anthem followed by the Philippine national anthem, “Bayang Magiliw,” was sung to begin the meeting. After each board member was introduced, members celebrated and cheered in appreciation for the board member’s dedication, hard work and sacrifice.

“It’s about our Filipino culture, our politics and our love for the community,” said FASA President Christine Labajo.

Labajo is a senior, double majoring in religious studies and Asian-American history. She has been a part of the committee since 2006, when she was the community chairperson and in 2007 as secretary.

In a collaborative effort to interact with all of the members, the second part of the agenda was called “icebreakers.” This gave a chance for everyone to make acquaintances and feel comfortable with one another.

Beneath an arch of red balloons, a drum set, electric guitar and bass guitar were set up as students alternated between playing the instruments. Board members managed to carol some tunes, playing cover songs to entertain the audience.

“We’re not just a social club,” said CSUN sophomore Chris Sipin. “We focus on academics, culture, politics and teaching the public about our culture.”

FASA members are active community leaders who volunteer time at several Filipino-based centers to teach their native language, cooking Filipino food and teaching traditional Filipino dances. Bahay Kubo is a Filipino culture and arts center located in the San Fernando Valley, where FASA members dedicate time to teach the youth.

Produced and directed by FASA members, the 23rd Annual Filipino Culture Night is a free concert showcasing the talents of CSUN’s Filipino-American students with acting, dancing and singing. The concert is on March 22 and will have two showings at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Performing Arts Center at CSUN.

FASA meets every Thursday evening. After the meeting, FASA members are encouraged to join everyone in a wide array of activities such as bowling, karaoke and dinner at various restaurants off campus.

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