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How did this happen?

How did this project come about? Where did you get your information? I get a lot of these kinds of questions. The idea for the documentary emerged when seeking to initiate an annual celebration of the Chicana/o Studies Department founding, faculty members Gerard Meraz and Maria Elena Fernandez called on MEChA students and together this team decided a documentary telling the department’s origin story would be the best way to celebrate.

The team then contacted me, at that time a CSUN senior and Chicana/o Studies major, to “help” with the project. Little did I know then, I would eventually became the director, editor, cinematographer  and many other roles.

The greater task in making this project happen was where do we get information about the department? Who can we ask? Where do we even start? It was difficult to answer these questions because there was no book to reference or articles that dealt with specifically CSUN’s Chicana/o Studies Department. So we decided to speak with the older professors of the department and through these conversations we started to discover snippets, anecdotes, that helped form the story of Chicano Studies.

In December of 2005, a group of students and professors sat down and talked about the inception of the Chicana/o Studies Department at CSUN. There was a panel of three preofessors, Gerald Resendez, Jose Hernandez & Everto Ruiz, who spoke about their role in the development of the department.

We decided to film the panel and what you see below is a snippet of that conversation between the professors and the audience.