ALAS: The Inside Scoop
Yaneli Gonzalez '14/ Ryan Szeto '14
Contributing Editor/ Associate Editor
Q: What inspired you to become involved with ALAS?
A: As a freshman at SI, coming from a school in the mission district where over half the student body was Latino, I experienced a culture shock. I turned to ALAS to find a group of students that had similar experiences and that could relate to me through our common roots. ALAS provided support and allowed me to find my “familia” at school. To this day, I continue to have a relationship with other students that were a part of ALAS and have already graduated.
Q: What do you think ALAS is all about?
A: I believe that ALAS is about encouraging a sense of unity within the Latino population and its allies at SI. We also create a support network for not only the members of the club, but for their families as well. We constantly talk about finding ways to celebrate and spread knowledge about our Latino culture, history, and experiences at SI.
Q: Describe some of the events that you have planned for the club this year
A: The club has events such as socials, where members can have fun and get to know each other. ALAS works together with the other affinity clubs at SI and hopes to create more events in which the members of these clubs can come together. One HUGE event that happens annually is the Latino Summit. Latino students from different schools all over the country, mostly from the bay area, come to SI and experience a weekend of empowerment for students of color. Since last year, we have emphasized Black and Brown unity, so we invited not only Latino students but also African American students. Guest speakers, known for their stories of success as people of color, share their past and inspire us to make a brighter future. After hearing speeches, attending a workshop, playing icebreakers, and socializing with others, on the last day we had a talent show. Different artists performed and students were encouraged to share their own talents on stage. Through the Latino Summit, I met so many students of color with whom I shared common stories, interests, and with whom I keep communication with, even if they are from a different state!
Q: What do you have to say to any people considering joining the club?
A: JOIN! Don’t hesitate! ALL are welcome! You don’t even have to be Latino to join the club, joining as allies is a great way to gain knowledge and support fellow students at SI. We have club meetings on most Tuesdays during recess in room 107.
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