City College Times

Vice mayor speaks at SJCC for Latino Heritage Month

Carrasco encourages students to be active in the community

San+Jose+Vice+Mayor+Magdalena+Carrasco+poses+for+a+selfie+with+students+and+faculty+members+of+Movimiento+Estudantil+Chicano+de+Aztlan%2C+who+organized+her+speech+on+campus+on+Oct.+12+to+honor+Latino+Heritage+Month.
San Jose Vice Mayor Magdalena Carrasco poses for a selfie with students and faculty members of Movimiento Estudantil Chicano de Aztlan, who organized her speech on campus on Oct. 12 to honor Latino Heritage Month.

San Jose Vice Mayor Magdalena Carrasco poses for a selfie with students and faculty members of Movimiento Estudantil Chicano de Aztlan, who organized her speech on campus on Oct. 12 to honor Latino Heritage Month.

Tammy Do

Tammy Do

San Jose Vice Mayor Magdalena Carrasco poses for a selfie with students and faculty members of Movimiento Estudantil Chicano de Aztlan, who organized her speech on campus on Oct. 12 to honor Latino Heritage Month.

Tammy Do, Times Staff

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Vice Mayor Magdalena Carrasco spoke about her immigrant background and her goals in representing District 5 on the East side of San Jose on an event at San Jose City College on Oct. 12.

“Thirty years have gone by in which the East side has been ignored,” Carrasco said, referring to the length of time since a vice mayor had last been chosen from the neighborhood. “Where the majority of our immigrant population lives. … We have the most gang homicides, the highest rate of truancy, and the highest levels of aggravated assaults.”

The event was organized by Movimiento Estudiantil Chicanos de Aztlan (MEChA) club, and intended to mark Latino Heritage Month, which ended on Oct. 15.

Carrasco spoke of her immigrant parents and how they came to the United States from rural Mexico in order to provide more opportunities to their children. She said that it was this background, and her years as a social worker that inspired her to go into politics.

“Most of the Latino people reside on the (East) side,” mechanical engineering and business major Uriel Perez said. “Just knowing that we have someone who knows the history of the East side… I’m just glad to see there’s her and more Latina people at City Hall helping us.”

The city council member’s plans for the East side include getting converted garage units up to code and certified as housing, keeping libraries and communities open after school and in the summer to serve children, and increasing minimum wage.

“Rent’s too high. We don’t have enough programs or school funds,” Perez said, as a resident of East San Jose.

Carrasco encouraged students to get involved in their communities, and to serve the public with the best that they could, get things done without getting egotistical.

“You’re going to die a slow death,” Carrasco said, speaking of the sell-by date of political careers. “You cannot think so highly of yourself because you may not live to see it.”

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Vice mayor speaks at SJCC for Latino Heritage Month