LASSO Latin American Studies Student Organization

Latin American Studies Student Organization (LASSO)

LASSO is an SDSU student organization that is open to all grade levels and disciplines. Its members are active not just in academics but in advocacy, activism, art, community service and all other arenas that raise awareness and knowledge of LAS-related topics, activities and events in San Diego and beyond. Our purpose is to gain an understanding of Latin America’s place in many academic disciplines as well as to enhance the student experience in their various degree programs through exploring the cultures and influences of Latin America. Membership is open to all SDSU students with an interest in Latin America.

Our purpose: to gain an understanding of Latin America’s place in many academic disciplines as well as to enhance the student experience in their various degree programs through exploring the cultures and influences of Latin America.

Latin America is a region. It is a concept. It is a symbol. It is a place and a notion that exist both geographically and ideologically, tangible yet not and ever-changing yet concrete, like the ancient ruins that freckle its weary and wary landscape. For these reasons and so many others, Latin American Studies is an academic realm unlike any other, and much like the region that governs its title; it is in constant flux and perpetual motion. 

From its rightful name, to its true foundations, to its unfathomable future, Latin American Studies defies a definitive lineage, so like many before us and the many to come, we the members and supporters of SDSU's LAS Student Organization are no more and no less than moving parts in the evolution of Latin American Studies, and will contribute toward its future as we see it, painted by our own perspectives and textured by our own beliefs. It is only through diversity in methods of exploration that we can achieve something akin to full understanding.

Take a glance through our page to find out more about us and our activities. Remember, it is our diverse student membership that makes our organization flourish: we hope you’ll join as the next LASSO member!

Article I: Name

Section 1.
The name of this organization shall be the Latin American Studies Student Organization at San Diego State University.

Artile II: Purpose

Section 1.
The purposes of this organization are to promote awareness of Latin American cultures and issues through guest speakers, films, cultural groups, and get-togethers

Article III: Authority

Section 1.
This organization is a recognized student organization at San Diego State University and adheres to all campus policies as set forth in the SDSU Student Organization Handbook.

Section 2.
This organization may establish Standing Rules to govern administrative and procedural matters (such as time and location of meetings, etc.).  Standing Rules shall not conflict with these bylaws. Standing Rules may be adopted, amended, or temporarily suspended by a majority vote present at an organization meeting where a quorum is present (advance notice is not required).

Section 3.
The rules contained in the most recent version of Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised shall be the parliamentary authority for this organization and shall govern in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with these bylaws and any special rules of order the organization may adopt.

Article IV: Membership

Section 1.
Membership in the organization shall be open to those regularly-enrolled San Diego State University who are interested in the mission of the group.

Section 2.
[California State University requires this statement must be included verbatim; except that social fraternities and sororities are permitted by Federal law to select members by gender.] 

Eligibility for membership or appointed or elected student officer positions may not be limited on the basis of race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, color, age, gender, gender identity, marital status, citizenship, sexual orientation, or disability. The organization shall have no rules or policies that discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, color, age, gender, gender identity, marital status, citizenship, sexual orientation, or disability.

Article V: Officers

Section 1.
The officers of the organization shall be the President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer.

Section 2.
Powers and Duties of Officers
a. The President shall serve as the chief executive officer of the organization, shall preside at all meetings of the organization and shall prepare the agenda for meetings. The President shall be the official spokesperson of the organization, representing the policies, views, and opinions of the organization in its relations with the campus and community at large.  The President shall appoint all committees and committee chairs. The President shall have such further powers and duties as may be prescribed by the organization.

b. The Vice President shall preside at organization meetings in the absence of the President. The Vice President shall perform all legal duties assigned by the President.  The Vice President shall assume the office of President if the office becomes vacant.

c. The Treasurer shall handle all financial affairs and budgeting of the organization, maintain all necessary accounting records, and prepare monthly financial reports for the membership. Said records shall be maintained in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. The Treasurer shall collect and deposit all dues and fees. The Treasurer shall maintain bank accounts in the organization’s name, requiring signatures of both the Treasurer and President for authorized disbursements.

d. The Secretary shall take minutes at all meetings of the organization, keep these on file, and submit required copies to all organization members.  The Secretary shall be responsible for all organization correspondence and shall keep copies thereof on file. The Secretary shall maintain membership records for the organization.

Section 3.
Qualifications necessary to hold office in this organization are as follows: 

California State University policies require that to be eligible for office, candidates must be in good standing and regularly enrolled students at San Diego State University.

California State University policies require that the President and Treasurer maintain a minimum overall 2.0 grade point average each term and not be on probation of any kind. The President and Treasurer must be enrolled in at least six units (three units for graduate and credential students) each semester while holding office. Undergraduate students with over 150 semester units or 125 percent of the units required for a specific baccalaureate degree objective, whichever is greater, or graduate and credential students with over 50 semester units or 167 percent of the units required for the graduate or credential objective, whichever is greater, are ineligible to hold the office of President or Treasurer.

No member may hold more than one office.

Article VI: Selection of Officers

Section 1.
The elected officers are elected annually.  Elections are held in the beginning of the fall and shall take place at a regularly scheduled meeting of the organization at which a quorum is present. At least one week’s notice shall be provided for any meeting at which an election is to be held.

Section 2.
Nominations for officers shall be made at the regular meeting immediately preceding the election. Nominations may also be made from the floor immediately prior to the election for each office. Members may nominate themselves for an office.

Section 3.
The officers shall be elected in this order: President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer.

Section 4.
Officers shall be elected by majority vote.

Section 5.
Votes shall be cast by secret ballot; however, when there is only one candidate for an office, a motion may be made to elect the candidate by acclamation.

Section 6.
Officers shall assume office on 09/08 and shall serve for one year.

Section 7.
If the position of President becomes vacant as the result of resignation, ineligibility or recall, the Vice President shall assume the office of President.  Vacancies in any other elected office shall be filled by an election held at the next regular meeting where the vacancy was announced. Nominations may be made at the meeting where the vacancy is announced, and nominations may also be made from the floor at the time of the election. The President may appoint an interim officer to fill the vacancy until the election is held.

Article VII: Meetings

Section 1.
Regular meetings shall be scheduled weekly during the academic year.

Section 2.
Special meetings may be called by the President or a majority of the Executive Committee. All members must be given a minimum of 24 hours notice prior to the meeting time.

Section 3.
Business cannot be conducted unless a quorum of the membership is present.  A quorum for this organization is defined as a majority of the voting membership.

Section 4.
Members must be present to vote. Absentee or proxy voting is not permitted.

Section 5.
In order to vote a member must be in good standing by means of meeting attendance.

Article VIII: Advisor(s)

Section 1.
The organization shall appoint an individual employed as a faculty or staff member by San Diego State University to serve as the university advisor to this organization as required by the California State University. Auxiliary staff and student assistants are not eligible to serve as advisors.  The advisor shall fulfill the responsibilities specified in the SDSU Student Organizations Handbook. Advisors shall serve on an academic year basis or until their successor has been selected.

Article IX: Executive Committee

Section 1.
The Executive Committee shall consist of the elected and appointed officers, with the advisor(s) serving as non-voting member(s).

Section 2.
The Executive Committee shall meet weekly during the academic year. Special meetings may be called by the President or a majority of the Executive Committee. All members must be given 24 hours notice of the meeting.  A quorum shall consist of a majority of the Executive Committee members.

Section 3.
When necessary, Executive Committee business can be conducted via email or via online meetings.

Section 4.
The Executive Committee shall have general supervision of the affairs of the organization between meetings and is authorized to take action when action must be taken prior to the next meeting.

Section 5.
The Executive Committee shall report to the membership all actions taken between meetings.  Except when it is too late to do so (such as when a contract has been executed), any actions taken by the Executive Committee may be rescinded or modified by the membership by a majority vote.

Article X: Standing and Ad Hoc Committees

Section 1.
The organization shall have the following standing committees: None.

Article XI: Finances

Section 1.
Membership dues shall be $0.

Article XII: Disclipline Of Members

Section 1.
When a member believes that another member has engaged in conduct that is detrimental to the organization, a written charge may be filed with the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee shall review the charges and may conduct a preliminary investigation if deemed appropriate. If the preliminary investigation concludes that misconduct appears to have occurred, the Executive Committee shall conduct a hearing on the matter. The member alleged to have engaged in the misconduct shall be given at least 72 hours notice of the hearing and be given an opportunity to present a defense. By a majority vote, the Executive Committee shall determine whether misconduct occurred. If it determines that misconduct did occur, Executive Committee shall prepare a report to the membership of its findings and recommended sanctions, which may include expulsion, suspension, or lesser sanction(s) including, but not limited to, a reprimand, removal from office, a fine or corrective remedies.

Section 2.
The membership shall review the hearing report in executive session, and the member accused of misconduct shall have an opportunity to rebut the information in the report. After providing a statement to the membership, the member accused of misconduct shall leave the room for the remainder of the deliberations.

Section 3.
The membership shall vote first on whether the member has engaged in misconduct.  If by a two-thirds vote, the membership determines that misconduct has occurred, the membership shall then by a two-thirds vote, determine appropriate sanction(s). The accused member shall be immediately notified of the outcome.

Section 4.
By a two-thirds vote, the membership may reinstate a member who has been suspended or expelled.

Article XIII: Amendments

Section 1.
Proposed amendments to these bylaws shall be presented to the membership, in writing, one meeting prior to the meeting where the amendment will be voted upon.     

Section 2.
Bylaw amendments require approval by two-thirds of the voting members present at a regular meeting.  The amendment shall be effective immediately unless otherwise stipulated in the amendment.

Section 3.
A copy of any amendments to these bylaws must be submitted to the Student Activities and Campus Life Office at San Diego State University within two weeks after adoption.

My Fellow Latin Americanist,

Hoy les escribimos para expresar nuestro apoyo a las manifestaciones y por respeto a las vidas de nuestros hermanos y hermanas Afro-Americanos. LASSO lamenta la vida de los Afro-Americanos que se han perdido como resultado del racismo sistémico que impregna los Estados Unidos. LASSO se solidariza con las comunidades Afro-Americanas y con los manifestadores que exigen justicia por los asesinatos de George Floyd, Tony McDade, Sean Reed, Breonna Taylor y las vidas que se han perdido debido a la brutalidad policial.

Los asesinatos actuales de la policía y la falta de responsabilidad envían el mensaje de que las comunidades Afro-Americanas son desechables e inferiores a sus contrapartes, gente blanca. Una y otra vez vemos a nuestros hermanos y hermanas Afro-Americanos convertirse en otra estadística de violencia policial. A esto decimos basta! El "líder" de nuestro país ha amenazado usar militares contra los ciudadanos que con razón llevan su ira y frustración a las calles. La militarización y la amenaza hacia los cuerpos de personas negras muestran el desprecio de Estados Unidos por excluirlos de sus derechos básicos de vida, libertad y búsqueda de la felicidad.

Este NO es el momento de guardar silencio. Habla y alza las voces de nuestras comunidades negras.

Formas de involucrarse:

  • Siga @blmsandiego y @sdlgbtcoalition en instagram para eventos específicos de San Diego

  • Difundir la conciencia con familiares y amigos.

  • Firme la petición: defundthepolice/

  • Llame al DA Mike Freeman en Minnesota, 612-348-5550 para exigir el enjuiciamiento de Derek Chauvin (insignia # 1087) y Tou Thoa (insignia # 7162)

  • Si tiene la capacidad, done a @SDbailfund

Today we write to you to express our support of the protests and out of respect for the lives of our Black brothers and sisters. LASSO mourns the Black lives that have been lost as a result of the enduring systemic racism that permeates through the United States. LASSO stands in solidarity with the Black communities and protestors that are demanding justice for the killings of George Floyd, Tony McDade, Sean Reed, Breonna Taylor, and the many lives that have been lost due to police violence.

The present day killings by the police and the lack of accountability sends the message that Black communities are disposable and inferior to their white counterparts. Time and time again we see our Black brothers and sisters become another statistic of police violence. To this we say basta! Our country's “leadership” has threatened to mobilize the military against its citizens who are rightfully taking their anger and frustration to the streets. The militarization and threat towards Black and brown bodies show the United State’s disregard to exclude them from their basic rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

This is NOT the time to be silent. Speak up and lift the voices of our Black communities. 

Ways to get involved:

  • Follow @blmsandiego and @sdlgbtcoalition on instagram for San Diego specific events

  • Spread awareness with family members and friends 

  • Sign the petition: defundthepolice/

  • Call DA Mike Freeman in Minnesota, 612-348-5550 to demand the prosecution of Derek Chauvin (Badge# 1087) and Tou Thoa (Badge#7162) 

  • If you have the capacity, donate to the @SDbailfund

2020-2021 LASSO Leadership

Latin American Studies Student Organization (LASSO)
San Diego State University

Meet Our Officers

Cesar ArevaloHi! I am Cesar and I am your ‘20-‘21 LASSO President. Currently, I am a 2nd year MPH student with Epidemiology concentration. Through my research, I want to better the quality of care queer and Latino individuals receive in health care facilities. I am also interested in studying how tourism impacts the spread of infectious diseases in Mexico. Outside of school, I enjoy playing tennis, learning new recipes, and grabbing a beer with friends (pre-covid era of course.) I am excited to serve this organization and help foster a community between all students who have a love and interest for Latin America. 
HDiego Ceballosello everyone, my name is Diego Armando Ceballos and I am the Vice President of LASSO for the 2020-2021 school year. I am a second year graduate student in the M.A. Latin American Studies and Master's in Public Health with concentration on Health Promotion and Behavioral Science. My research interests are looking at the impact of structural violence on health systems for the indigenous population of southern Mexico, etiology of health disparities in southern California and in Tijuana, and looking at the role of Institutional Research offices in advancing racial equity for students of color. Outside of school, I enjoy hiking, biking, and exploring new places to eat.
Maria MendozaHi everyone, my name is María and I am LASSO's treasurer for the 2020-21 school year. I am a second year graduate student in the joint M.P.A. and M.A. in Latin American Studies. This school year I am looking forward to narrowing down my thesis topic, but a few of my interests are international development, education, and the role non-governmental organizations play in Central America. Outside of academics, I love to bake desserts, hike, and travel. 
Stephanie VeraMy name is Stephanie Vera, I currently hold the secretary position in LASSO. I am a second year student in the MPH Health Promotion and Behavioral Science and MA in Latin American Studies. I am a first generation student, born and raised in the state of Idaho, where I received my BS in Health Education and a BA in Spanish for the Health Professions. Currently, my educational goals are to research mental health resources for returning migrants and immigrant health in Latinx and minority communities. 
Desseray ReyesHi everyone, my name is Desseray Reyes and I am the 2020-2021 Public Affairs Officer for LASSO. It is also my first year as a graduate student in the MPA/MA in Latin American Studies program. I received my Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology and Latin American Studies from SDSU in spring 2020. I am originally from Santa Ana, CA and moved to Tijuana, Baja California at the age of thirteen. Currently, I am interested in exploring the components of transnationalism, specifically studying transborder students' resources like financial needs, transportation, who live on the U.S and Mexico land. I enjoy reading in my free time, binge watching my favorite shows, and traveling!