Two assistant directors of diversity of the Student Government attempted to receive funding of $2021.69 for a LatinX conference during the Student Senate Meeting on Wednesday but were denied the funds needed for the project.
The assistant directors, Priscilla Valazquez and Alexandra Quintana, have been in office for 2 months. In that time, they have tried to contact other LatinX clubs on campus, however, they received no response.
Seeing this as an opportunity to encourage representation and to address issues that minorities face, Priscilla and Alexandra discovered the LatinX Leads Student Leadership Conference, held in New York.
Quintana questioned the council. "How many people in here know about the issues that are affecting the lives of your community right now, how many people in here know truly what it is like to be an Hispanic student on campus and beyond that?" she said.
LSU Student Body President, Stewart Lockett, supported the funding to encourage a larger movement for minority groups. "The time is now," Lockett said. "Because we don't know what things will be like in years to come."
The Senate saw the funding in another way. One senator said it would be "fiscally irresponsible," and that the conference lacked legitimacy, while a proponent senator debated that the Student Government has the money to fund the program and that it would be more of an investment.
The Senate failed to pass the finance bill last night with a vote of 13-21. However, Quintana says this does not discourage her. They plan to apply their critiques and come back to get it passed.
Quintana says they are disappointed, but not discouraged. "It's kind of hard at this point, you just have to learn to have a tough skin and you learn to deal with the consequences." she said.
To continue to promote diversity and inclusiveness, Alexandra Quintana welcomes any minority students who are feeling unheard or invisible to go speak with her in the Student Government Office on the first floor of the Union.