Jayson Cabrera has made his mark as a force for Latino culture at Stockton University by not giving up.
Now a junior, he is president of the Latin American Students Association, but he has been working on developing a group that would be a strong voice for Latino students since he first arrived at Stockton.
He signed up for a group known as Los Latinos Unidos when he was a freshman, but quickly found out that “the club only had a departing president and a handful of unmotivated club members. Instead of leaving when I had the chance, I saw this as my opportunity to step up to a leadership role and start my mark on Stockton.”
After a number of ups and downs, in which the club lost most of its board due to academic and financial pressures, Cabrera decided to try again.
“I kept getting asked if I was still part of ‘that Spanish club,’ and if I still had meetings,” he said. “After talking to some mentors and upperclassmen as well as some other experiences, I decided that LLU needed to be brought back to our campus, but with some modifications. In a few months’ time, the club underwent a name change, a perception change, and a change of values. Thus LLU was reborn but this time as the Latin American Student Association.
“All in all, my vision for LASA is to give the Stockton community a place to preserve, showcase, and expand our Latino culture,” said Cabrera. He feels he is helping to establish an organization that will continue growing, since the leadership team is made up of freshman and sophomores, with him as president.