UChicago MEChA

Who is M.E.Ch.A?

El Movimiento Estudiantil Chican@ de Aztlan (M.E.Ch.A) is part of a larger movement and our specific M.E.Ch.A. chapter is both an activist and cultural recognized student organization, that uses community service, political involvement and education as a means for change. M.E.Ch.A. is not only open to Chicana/o or Latina/o students but also to anyone who identifies with and commits themselves to promoting culture, history and higher education as devices of change among the oppressed.

Our weekly meetings are held every Tuesday at 7:00PM in OMSA: 5710 S. Woodlawn

Donations are always welcome! Mail checks to 5706 S. University Ave. Chicago, IL 60637
Payable to: The University of Chicago- M.E.Ch.A

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Spring Recap

Although this might seem ridiculously late, I felt the need to recap on our accomplishments during last quarter. I want to Congratulate all MEChISTAS for a wonderful quarter, specially all the hard work put into Chavez / Huerta Week, the Gang Violence Panel, Toxic Tour, Latino commencement and the endless end of the year Tamale Fundraiser.
I want to start with a recap of Chavez / Huerta Week, each event had an average of 15+ people in attendance. While some events were a lot more popular than others we had different people come to all of them. Of course, the event with the most attendance was our Keynote Speech by Dolores Huerta. It was a pleasure meeting and hearing her talk. Her humbleness and energy filled the Social Science building. She was a wonderful speaker and example of resistance and hope for all us. The event was even covered by the Chicago Maroon, although they failed to mention MEChA anywhere in the article. After Ms. Huerta's speech, we had a little reception with delicious appetizers and even cake in commemoration of her birthday. Here are some pictures ...

Although this last quarter we did not hold an Educational Conference, we did have other programming that kept us busy through out. A big shout- out to Vicko in coordinating a co-sponsored Gang Violence panel with Chicago Justice Initiative. Our panel had great attendance and wonderful, insightful speakers such as Professor Irving Spergel, Chicago Police Officer Rafael Yañez and Youth Oureach and Community Organizers Oscar Contreras and Xavier McElrath-Bey. Thanks to all those who attended! I also want to congratulate Sarah and Karla for coordinating the Little Village Toxic Tour with Little Village Environmental Justice Organization. LVEJO youth have done magnificent work exposing the dangers of the coal factories surrounding Little Village. Thanks to all those who took the trip West to hear the youth and witness the environmental damage done by these companies.

I want to give a BIG BIG shout-out and congrats to all those who volunteered and pitched in for the Tamales Fundraiser. Apparently, they are a big hit on campus and we can make this a MEChA trademark. The Tamale Sale helped subsidy for the MEChA shirts and Regional Conference for this upcoming year. We did not make a huge profit due to the lack of time but MEChISTAS's energy and persistence showed that we can earn a lot more during the year! By the way, if you paid for a MEChA shirt and did not pick it up - please contact me. If you did not paid for a shirt but want one, contact me as well - we might have a few extra.

I want to end this recap by sending a big electronic MEChA clap to Omar "Shady" Ramirez, a
fellow MEChISTAS who graduated this year from the College. Omar was involved with MEChA for his entire College career. He was Co-Chair of MEChA during 07-08 and Secretary during 06-07. On top of writing a B.A. and all the mayhem that Senior Year brings, Omar found time to coordinate a Latino Commencement event for all graduating Latinos in the College. Omar, MEChA wishes you good luck wherever you go y acuerdaté de los pobres cuando seas grande! Se te extrañara


Also, good luck to the New Board!

MEChA Board 2009-2010

Julie Morales
Los Angeles, California


Rafael Marquez
Chicago, Illinois

Cristina Castañeda
Maywood, California


Ana Torres
Mexico City, Mexico

Community Engagement Chair

Victoria Alvarez
International & Latin American Studies
Dallas, Texas

Jessica Gutierrez
Political Science
Dallas, Texas

Publicity Chair
Lupe Leon
Phoenix, Arizona

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Chavez-Huerta Week Kicks Off!

A week-long celebration commemorating the lives of Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta, two individuals who's fight for justice for the Latino community of the 60s continues to inspire the Latino communities of today.

Thursday April 2nd Immigrant Bashing: Human and Civil Rights Violations in the U.S.A. Today
A teach-in by the Latino Union of Chicago 7:30pm @ OMSA 5710 Woodlawn

Monday April 6th 
The Bandana Project: Sexual Exploitation of Farmworker Women
6:00 @ OMSA Community Lounge

Monday April 6th
What is a Chicano?
A Panel on Chicano Identity
7:00 @ OMSA Community Lounge

Wednesday April 8th
Dolores Huerta: A Woman in Pursuit of Justice 
MEChA's Cesar Chavez-Dolores Huerta Keynote Speaker
7pm-9pm @ Social Sciences Rm 122 

Dolores Huerta herself is our keynote speaker for Chavez-Huerta 2009! Don't miss seeing one of the most influential members of the Latino community in her first visit to the University of Chicago campus! Labor activist, community organizer, and immigrant rights advocate, Dolores Huerta is one of the most prominent figures in Chicano history and U.S. labor right's history. 

In 1962 she, along with Cesar Chavez, founded the United Farm Worker's Association, one of the first successful farm worker unions. Once a key organizer behind the grape boycott of 1965 that resulted in the first successful farm worker contract, Dolores Huerta continues to fight for immigrants in the U.S. through her foundation, advocating for sustainable communities and their pursuit for social justice.

Tuesday April 7th
Dreaming of Higher EducationA DREAM Act Informational
6:30 @ OMSA 5710

Thursday April 9thArte Popular: Activism Through Art
5:30-7:30 @ SMART Museum

Friday April 10th
Movie Night
Screening of "The Fight in the Fields"
6pm @ OMSA 5710