For Edgar Mancia Garcia ‘20, a Salvadoran Guatemalan student from Durham, NC, coming to a PWI was a big culture shock. Fortunately, Garcia was able to find a community and form meaningful bonds with fellow NC State students with the help of Multicultural Student Affairs before his first semester even began.
Garcia’s involvement with Multicultural Student Affairs began when he attended the Symposium for Multicultural Scholars, an educational and transitional experience for incoming undergraduate first-year and transfer students of color. Each year, this three-day symposium aims to foster community and provide students with information to help ensure their academic, social and emotional success at NC State.
“It allowed me to interact and form bonds with other people of color before my first semester at NC State started. It was because of this three-day event that I never truly felt alone on campus,” says Garcia. “Symposium also showed me the different student resources on campus and taught me how to use them to my advantage. This was big not only for me, but other first-generation college students.”
Multicultural Student Affairs (MSA) researches, designs and implements a number of other unique programs that promote the pursuit of academic success, retention and graduation of students, with an emphasis on African American, Native American and Latinx students.
Garcia’s involvement with MSA continued throughout his undergraduate career. He was a member of Lambda Theta Phi Latin Fraternity, the first Latinx Greek letter organization in the U.S., Mi Familia and Sube Ritmo, NC State’s only Latin dance team, all of which partner with MSA.
All of the campus community centers at NC State aim to provide students with the resources, support and community they need to succeed.
“I think they’re extremely important on campus because a lot of the time you have first-generation college students and they don’t know where to go for resources or where to find people who look like them, or people who relate to them, and these centers make it easier to find those people,” Garcia says.
To enable Multicultural Student Affairs to continue providing programming, conferencing, and professional and personal development for students, consider giving to the Multicultural Student Affairs Enhancement Fund on Day of Giving.
Jenna Nabors (she/her) is a fourth-year student majoring in communication with minors in international studies, journalism and English and a Park Scholar. Share your thoughts about this article on Twitter at @NCStateOIED.