What It Feels Like to be a Latina Student at Westmont College

by intersectionalstranger

Bethany, a junior at Westmont College, narrates a day in the life of a Latina student at Westmont. An excerpt:

“Yesterday night, after a day and a half at the St. Mary’s Retreat Center as a student leader for Intercultural Programs, my friends invited me to McConnell’s. …. [O]ne of my closest guy friends spoke up and said, “Hey Bethany! I have a story that would make you feel better and laugh a little!” So naturally I said, “Alright, fine. Go for it.” He tells me of how they were at the restaurant  and noticed a Latina woman who was drinking some alcohol and loudly saying, “She was the life of the party, saying a lot of funny stuff, yelling things in a spanish accent!” and all of these other things pertaining to her ethnicity. He kept telling me that they laughed and wished that I was there to experience it and laugh with them.

Not only did this not make me feel better, it angered me to the point of storming out of McConnell’s without saying goodbye to my friends..I drove back to Westmont…and headed towards the Westmont Observatory to be alone and stargaze. As I was stargazing, I couldn’t help but cry because of what I have been feeling as a person of color. I called my mother and told her what happened, she calmed me down and said, “I am so saddened and blessed that you are growing as a young Latina woman and seeing all the injustice around you. Will they ever understand what you are going through? No, but that’s okay! This is a part of your journey that you’re going to have to go through while staying true to who you are.”

Go read the entire post at Bethany’s blog here.