ALMA is a welcome program for incoming first-year and new transfer undergraduate students interested in the Latinx experience on campus. Coordinated by La Casa, UM's Latinx umbrella organization, and sponsored by the Office of Multi-Ethnic Student Affairs (MESA), this program aims to support and empower participants while preparing them for their on-campus experience at the University of Michigan. Additionally, ALMA creates opportunities for participants to connect with their peers, current Latinx students, faculty, and staff before the academic year begins.
This year, ALMA will take place on-campus from Sunday, August 22nd to Wednesday, August 25th. Participants will qualify for early move-in as the program takes place before regular move-in. ALMA is completely free of cost and open to ALL incoming first-year and new transfer students interested in learning more about the Latinx experience on campus. Please register for ALMA using this link.
Despite the fact that I am literally not Latinx at all I think ALMA was the right experience for me. Emmanuel is the one who advised that I should go and I thank him for persuading me to do it. If I did not do ALMA then I do not think I would be fully comfortable at this University or have any friends at all. My family group (Chata) is filled with so many people I love and respect and we hang out together all the time(which can not be said about the other family groups). Even though I may not have enjoyed all the activities during ALMA, I think it has impacted my journey through college greatly and I am glad I decided to do it. I hope ALMA will continue so that others can find a community on a campus that is essentially a PWI.
Greg De Leon
I must be old now, ALMA 2013 (the best year of course) was filled with so many momments and people. ALMA seems like such a long time ago. It played such a key role for my undgrad. I came to UofM only knowing 1 person and ALMA gave so many friends and connections. To this day those friend I made long ago are still the ones I visit and talk to. I even volunteered for a while and made more friends. Hopefully ALMA continues to connect us together.
ALMA really helped me with my transition to U of M. I was the first in my family to leave for college and on top of that, I didn’t know anyone from my hometown attending Michigan. ALMA helped prepare me for my freshman year, and connected me with an amazing community. I actually ended up meeting my best friend at ALMA, and I made connections that have been so impactful on my college experience!.
Having the opportunity to participate and volunteer at ALMA has been an amazing experience and a significant part of my Michigan story! I find myself stepping out of my comfort zone and making numerous connections from ALMA and La Casa through this retreat and back to Ann Arbor!
I loved my ALMA! It was a bit nerve wracking at first but I really got to meet and connect with many different Latinx people who I am still friends with now. It gave me a sense of relief to know that I had friendly faces I could reach out to later. Someone to show me around where my classes would be or the best dining hall! It was also great to get acquainted with the org and offices supporting La Casa.
ALMA was such a warm welcome to campus. I got pushed out of comfort zone meeting new people and learning new things about myself and my identity. I was able to connect and build relationships that have lasted me more than 10 years now. During ALMA, through the presence of alumni, volunteers, faculty, and staff, I was ingrained the importance of being a member of a community where you come back and contribute to other generations to come. ALMA truly was such a special part of my undergraduate career and gave me the confidence to be an alumnae and professional and that is Latinx and proud.
ALMA was a great experience where I learned so much about the resources available on campus! I also met some of my closest friends through ALMA and made connections with peers, creating a home away from home . It’s definitely great to see familiar faces when starting Fall Semester as well as continuing to see these people who’ve become more like family at La Casa’s weekly mass meetings.
Jose Guadalupe Guzman
If it wasn’t for ALMA I don’t believe I will be where I am at today. I wholeheartedly believe that it was because of the friendships I made that helped me push through the rigorous work load Michigan puts on their students. My family did not go to college, let alone they never went to high school. This was an adventure I am glad I did not have to go through alone.
As someone who was not satisfied with my freshmen orientation earlier in the summer and did not participate in BRIDGE, ALMA was the first time I felt secure in my decision to attend Michigan. I learned a lot about resources available to me as well as gaining a feeling of empowerment and met some of my best friends, shoutout to my family group, Lechuga! The following year, I decided to be a family group leader (for that beautiful family you see in the slideshow above) because I loved my ALMA so much and I wanted to help make future students’ experiences even better. I was able to use my knowledge of the University and my previous ALMA/La Casa experience to make the transition to college easier for a number of first-year students I was lucky enough to interact with.