La Casa Latina
What Is La Casa Latina?
In August of 2014, the Provost Committee, summoned Hoya Latinx leaders to spearhead the first university sponsored Latinx Heritage Month. Latinx organizations came together to host four foundational events: Latinx Welcome Dinner, a Latinx-style kick-off barbecue, a noche de baile, and a panel on Latinx Identity at Georgetown. Their success led them to contemplate and mobilize on other important issues the Latinx community faces on the Hilltop. Thus, the movement to start a Casa Latina for Hoyas was born.
On April 10, 2015, LLF and the Last Campaign for Academic Reform (LCAR) submitted their respective proposals and petitions to university administrators. From there a working group was formed with university administration in order to work towards the goal of having a Casa Latina by Fall 2016.
La Casa Latina will be a centralized location of inclusivity in which Latinxs can share their narratives, access resources integral to success on the Hilltop, and engage in vital discussions about the intersectionality of race/ethnicity, class, sexuality, gender, ability, privilege and power within the Latinx identity. In order to unite all members of the Latinx community, Casa Latina will ensure that students feel not only welcomed at Georgetown, but also feel empowered to grow and flourish in all encompassing aspects of the collegiate community.
Over the course of the year, Casa Latina residents host several programs for all students to participate in. Minority student organizations are encouraged to utilize the house for club meetings and for social events. To reserve the house, please use the Casa Latina Request Form.
Benefits of Serving as a Casa Latina Resident:
● Develop teamwork and leadership skills
● Learn fiscal responsibility and accountability
● Network and connect with larger campus community
● Plan programs to support mission of Casa Latina
Photo by: Allysa Lisbon
La Casa Latina 2018-2019 Resident Mission Statement
La Casa Latina will foster a community of growth, action, and healing. We will create a community engaged academically, culturally, and spiritually by deconstructing our experiences through dialogue and through the exploration of our intersecting, marginalized, and dominant identities. We will empower the community to be brave and radical in a way that cultivates accountability for ourselves and our values, the advancement of Georgetown University, and the development of the greater Latinx community. We will prioritize healing in our community by finding power in our histories and nurturing solidarity among those who seek liberation.
CASA LATINA RESIDENTS 2018-2019
Joseph Gomez – Resident Director
Joseph Gomez is a senior in the School of Foreign Service pursuing a major in Regional and Comparative Studies, focusing on social movements in Northeast Asia and Latin America, with a minor in Spanish. Most recently from Oxnard, CA, Joseph has deep roots in Southern California, and it is this Xicano identity that informs his passions for fighting for justice and building power within marginalized communities. Joseph found his first home on campus in Young Leaders in Education About Diversity, a first-year pre-orientation program that examines and tackles issues related to the intersections of identity, power, and privilege in society. This led him to other student organizations such as the Georgetown Solidarity Committee and the Latinx Leadership Forum. Off campus, Joseph is a Union Scholar with the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees where he engages with the labor movement through organizing and federal government lobbying. When it’s time for some self-care, Joseph can be found at a variety of fast-casual restaurants in DC or eating on campus with his Club Filipino family. This year, he is proud to serve as the resident director of Casa Latina. He looks forward to working with the other residents to facilitate a brave space where the Latinx community of Georgetown, the DMV Latinx community, and affirming allies can come together to challenge the oppressive institutions of anti-black racism, imperialism, and capitalism while also lifting up and celebrating the strength and resilience of our community.
Omaris Caceres – Dialogues Coordinator
Omaris Caceres is a junior in the School of Nursing and Health Studies (NHS) majoring in Global Health with a minor in Women’s and Gender Studies. She has lived in a few different places, but she tends to call Hershey, Pennsylvania home (where she attended boarding school for 9 years!). At Georgetown Omaris is involved in the Center for Multicultural Equity and Access (CMEA) by serving on the Hoya Saxa Weekend (HSW) Planning Committee, facilitating dialogues with Leaders in Education About Diversity (LEAD), supporting the Community Scholars Program (CSP), and being a peer leader for Young Leaders in Education About Diversity (YLEAD). As a resident of Casa Latina Omaris looks forward to hosting a range of different dialogues on topics she is interested in including Afro-latinidad, feminism, queer identity, and so much more. She hopes to create a welcoming and empowering Latinx students on campus by creating a supportive community within La Casa Latina.
Krystal Lanier – Marketing & Outreach Coordinator
Krystal Lanier is a Senior in the College of Arts & Sciences pursuing a major in Government and minor in Education, Inquiry, and Justice. She was born and raised in an immigrant community in Northwest Miami, FL where she also attended Miami Dade College before transferring to Georgetown. Her mother migrated from Honduras with her family due to an increase in violence and political turmoil in the mid 1980s. Krystal identifies as Honduran and African American because her father is African American. Some may say she is “afro-latina,” but she is still exploring the definition of the term. She practices many Caribbean cultures and customs due to Miami’s array of Caribbean influences. Her life experiences have had a major impact on her passions for promoting educational reform and empowering the youth—especially those from low-income and underrepresented communities. She hopes to empower the upcoming generation by teaching them to engage in conversations about race and ethnicity, class, and injustices in their communities and the world as a whole. Krystal is involved with Georgetown’s Premier Latin Dance team, Ritmo y Sabor, and is a founding member of the Central American United Students Association, La C.A.U.S.A. This past Summer, she studied abroad in Quito, Ecuador, where she participated in the Race, Gender and Ethnicity program. After studying abroad, Krystal served as a Summer Academy Program Aide for the Institute for College Preparation (ICP), where she helped guide rising sophomores in high school through the many academic and personal experiences involved in the program’s mission of creating a college-going culture. This year, she is serving as the Communications and Outreach Coordinator and hopes to expand Casa’s presence on campus and the DC community, and assist incoming students as they adjust to Georgetown. Her ultimate goal for Casa is to create a more inclusive environment for students who may not identify as Latinx but are interested in learning more about the community.
Juan Martinez – Financial Coordinator
Juan Martinez is a junior in the School of Foreign Service. Juan immigrated from Tamuín, San Luis Potosi, Mexico at the age of three along with his family. Since then, he has called east Dallas, Texas home. At Georgetown, Juan is majoring in Culture and Politics and minoring in Arabic. He hopes to focus on the importance of civil society and institution-building for the protection of human rights. Aside from his academics, Juan has been actively involved in on- and off-campus advocacy. Since his freshman year, Juan has been involved in the Georgetown University Student Association (GUSA), first as a Senator and currently as President. In these positions he has fought for greater representation of marginalized communities in student government, greater provision of student resources and reforming student government to be more accountable and accessible. Additionally, Juan has also been involved in community organizing through his involvement in Georgetown United Against Police Aggression (GUAPA), which advocates for healthier and safer student-police interactions at Georgetown. Juan believes in the importance of community-building, self-reflection and self-care as a necessary precursor to successful and fulfilling social justice work. As a result, he has also been actively involved in the UndocuHoyas, GU Pride, Journeys: An LGBTQ Center Retreat and GU ESCAPE and encourages students who are able to, to become involved in these spaces. Finally, as someone who hopes to always be in solidarity with other marginalized communities, Juan currently interns for The Bridge Initiative at the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding where he does research on Islamophobia as a form of prejudice and discrimination. This year, Juan is excited to serve as the Financial Coordinator of La Casa Latina. He looks forward to meeting members of the Georgetown community who choose to stop by and hopes that all who do find a space to call home.
Chelsea Hernandez – SOCA Representative & Historian (Fall 2018)
Chelsea Hernández is a Junior in the School of Foreign Service Studying Culture and Politics. She grew up in a first generation Mexican-American family in and around Chicago. The stories of resilience and passion within her community continue to drive her at her time at Georgetown and have helped her understand the power one can find in expressing their narrative in their own voice. On campus, Chelsea strives to build community and solidarity through dialogue, serving incoming and current students as a facilitator in YLEAD and LEAD. Chelsea has also worked to build community in her roles in MEChA and is always happy to be a friendly face in CMEA as an Intern. This year, Chelsea looks forward to engaging with various campus organizations as a SOCA liaison, with the intention of building a more unified and fortified environment for students of color on campus. Also serving as the Casa Latina Historian, Chelsea looks forward to sharing the stories of the folks who pass through Casa Latina and call it home.
Jesse Ferman – SOCA Representative & Historian (Spring 2019)
Jesse Ferman is a Senior in the College of Arts & Sciences, majoring in both Government and Justice and Peace Studies. Although born in an immigrant community in Southeast Houston, he had always attended school and spent his days in the East End – the heart of the city’s Latinx community – located in Houston’s Second Ward. His everyday challenges of growing up in a low-income immigrant family have influenced him to pursue a concentration in Human Rights and his aspiration to attend law school in the future. Recently he has co-founded the Central American United Student Association on campus and serves on the Advisory Committee on Business Practices – working with the University’s Senior Vice President to analyze, evaluate, and deepen an understanding of the ethical and moral issues that should be taken into consideration in the evaluation of staff labor policy. Jesse is also a proud tutor/mentor for Kids2College. Outside of Georgetown, Jesse has co-founded the HTX Youth Summit, an annual summit for Houston’s inner city youth to promote local activism – equipping them with foundational knowledge on the systemic urban injustices happening around them, and providing an inclusive space for them to learn, collaborate, and organize. Jesse is excited to be a part of Casa Latina this year and aims to create a more inclusive culture amongst Latinx clubs on campus.Like La Casa Latina on Facebook