(Portland, Ore.) January 14, 2011 — A Portland State University panel is seeking proposals from students and faculty for a commission of artwork for the new La Casa Latina student success center in Smith Memorial Student Union.
Winning artists will receive a commission from the university of up to $5,000 for the project, which can be one or more paintings, illustrations, photos or other media compositions. La Casa Latina is a 700-square-foot cultural and support center for Latino students next to the campus Multicultural Center.
The new center is part of PSU’s Exito! initiative announced by President Wim Wiewel last fall to bolster efforts to recruit and support Latino students, who are underrepresented at the university relative to their growing population in Oregon schools. Exito means success in Spanish, and the initiative emphasizes four stages of success: envisioning college from a young age, entering PSU, succeeding in college on a path to graduation and finding success in a career or graduate school path.
Jilma Meneses, PSU’s chief diversity officer who chairs the La Casa Latina committee, says the panel is open to all ideas and creative approaches that seek to represent student success.
“The art should reflect a student’s journey through education and beyond. That’s the theme of Exito, and Casa Latina is a key part of that,” Meneses said.
Portland State faculty, students and classes are eligible to submit projects. The deadline for proposals is Feb. 28. The Latino Student Success Building Committee, which includes students and faculty, will judge the proposals in March and award the winners.