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Conference to connect all Latinas

The annual Latina Connection Conference will take place to provide networking and connection opportunities for students.

Students+mingle+among+each+other+during+the+2017+Latina+Connection+Conference+at+the+Pointe.
Students mingle among each other during the 2017 Latina Connection Conference at the Pointe.

Students mingle among each other during the 2017 Latina Connection Conference at the Pointe.

Courtesy of the CSULB Latina Connection Conference's Facebook

Courtesy of the CSULB Latina Connection Conference's Facebook

Students mingle among each other during the 2017 Latina Connection Conference at the Pointe.

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A day designed for Latinas to share their testimonials, academic goals and personal struggles awaits dozens of students at Cal State Long Beach.

The university will host the 17th annual Latina Connection Conference Feb. 16 from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. The theme of the event is “honoring our past, transforming our future,” and it will take place in the University Student Union ballrooms, where lunch will be provided.

This free conference will be provided for Latina students to explore the role of culture and family in educational achievement, according to career counselor Rosa Trujillo. This event will be hosted by the Career Development Center, and will also discuss diversity and lifelong success.

“We really want to ask students, ‘who are you, what is the past that has built you and what is the transformation that will happen as you finish your education at CSULB?’” Trujillo said.

She also stated that discussions will be based around how Latina students can honor their past, whether it’s with their family, being a first-generation college student or through the different experiences they have encountered along the way.

“I’m looking forward to the Hispanic comradery [at the conference],” said Carolina Xique, a junior theatre major. “I love being Hispanic; I love being Latina. It’s one of the best parts of my life and it’s a huge part of who I am, so it will be comforting to meet other people who have had some of the same experiences as me.”

According to the event organizers, one of the event’s main goals is to talk about what the next step after graduation will be for these students.

This conference will not only allow students to connect with each other through discussion, but also with coordinators, staff and faculty on campus. This will help build a stronger support system and network for the students, according to their website.

“I’m looking forward to getting inspired and motivated by the other Latinas,” said Brenda Perez Leyva, a sophomore business and economics student. “I know that we can empower each other, especially sharing about being a Latina in the workplace, so I’m looking forward to getting advice and words of encouragement from the other women.”

Trujillo said that many students have come back to the Career Development Center to connect and use resources, after learning about what is offered at the conference. This allows many of them to get help with things like resume building and feeling connected to their community by reflecting on their stories with other Latinas.

“A lot of them really talk about what it means to be a Latina college student—especially if they are first generation college students,” Trujillo said. “They talk about their struggles and triumphs and really motivate each other.”

Students who want to RSVP are encouraged to log into CareerLINK, click on “events,” then click on “workshops” and select Latina Connection Conference. Students who are unable to attend the whole event are encouraged to attend any part of the conference they can.

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