Students present diversity project to state leaders

Students and staff of SOAR/Student Media/Cultural Arts and Diversity (SOMeCA) met with Senate Majority Leader Bill Monning and Senate President Pro Tempore Kevin De León in the state capitol to present a diversity project that received one-time state funding through the UC Office of the President.

The funds were part of a package of initiatives proposed by De León and approved by state legislators to address issues of access and student success for low-income students and students from underrepresented minority groups.

The group presented preliminary findings from the project which brought community-based theater productions to the campus to provide African/Black and Latinx community perspectives and serve as the basis for facilitated dialogues about race.

The May 31 meetings were scheduled at the invitation of Watsonville Mayor Oscar Rios, who said that one of his goals is to encourage young people to consider careers in government or serving in elected office.

After meeting with the senators, the delegation was honored by being introduced from the floor of the senate by Monning, who invited the senators to welcome the group and recognize it for its work on issues of diversity.