MSJC’s End-of-Year Events Celebrate Diversity
Mt. San Jacinto College (MSJC) hosted several cultural celebrations designed to honor and recognize the accomplishments of MSJC’s diverse student population. The events, organized by programs, clubs and affinity groups, were held during the weeks leading up to the official college graduation ceremony. These events provided an opportunity to foster inclusivity, celebrate diversity, and create a sense of belonging within the college community.
The end of year celebrations kicked off with an inaugural Lavender Celebration hosted by the LGBTQIA+ Taskforce. Seven graduating and transfer students were recognized at the event on May 5 at the San Jacinto Campus. The Lavender celebration honors LGBTQIA+ students and commemorates their contributions to MSJC.
The Puente Program held celebrations at the Menifee Valley Campus and the San Jacinto Campus on May 8 to commemorate the achievements of students in the program, recognizing Puente grads and transfer students for completing the year-long program. Many faculty, staff, former and current Puentistas, and guests attended the celebration and shared the positive impact of Puente, a program that has improved the college-going rate of California’s educationally and underrepresented students.
The Latinx/Indigenous Alliance hosted an annual RAZA Scholars Celebration to honor the success of graduating Latinx students. This bilingual and bicultural celebration gathered families, friends, and community members together to honor graduates. Students were encouraged to be “empowered agents for social change in your lives, in your families, and in your communities.” The joyful event was held on May 10 at the San Jacinto Campus.
At the 3rd annual Imani Celebration on May 12 students were recognized, families rejoiced, and speakers encouraged Black and African American students. The inspirational event, hosted by the MSJC Black Collective, has become an annual tradition.
Hosted by MSJC UndocuDREAMers, an inaugural UndocuGrad Celebration was introduced to recognize Undocumented, DREAMer, AB540, and mixed status students and allies for their perseverance in persisting and attaining their college degree. Students were inspired by former student leaders, advisors, and peers to coordinate this event to celebrate their achievements. “This is something we have been wishing for over the years, and it would not be possible without all the of the students here,” said Thai Pham, EOPS/CARE Associate Counselor.
MSJC student veteran graduates were honored for their dedication and service at the Veterans Celebration on May 15 at SJC. Guests heard a keynote address from Master Gunnery Sergeant Arthur Allen III, who served in the U.S. Marine Corps for 31 years as a communications expert. He spoke to the graduating veterans, commending them for their perseverance and encouraged them to continue to pursue their lives outside of the military and continue to serve their country with honor and leadership just as they did in uniform.
The annual Extended Opportunities Programs & Services (EOPS) Celebration was held on Saturday, May 19 at The Center in Wildomar. This graduation celebration recognized the culminating academic achievement of students in state and college funded programs that serve students with economic, linguistic, and educational challenges.
Each of these ceremonies gave graduates the opportunity to recognize significant people who had helped them reach their goal including faculty, program coordinators, peers, friends, and family. MSJC continues to create a safe and inclusive environment where all members of the college community feel valued and celebrated. These end-of-year events are an important step toward building a more diverse and inclusive campus culture.