Students are at the heart of MESC. In 2013, a dedicated group of 14 UCR students had a remarkable vision for the change they wanted to see on their campus. Determined, they developed a proposal and worked with campus administration to make MESC a reality. These students, which included current Director Tina Aoun, created a space to provide support services for all students with ties to the Middle East and North Africa.
Through polling and interaction with many students and faculty, they discovered how many Middle Eastern Highlanders reported instances of discrimination and feelings of exclusivity at UCR. Staying true to UCR’s reputation as one of the the most diverse UC campuses, the MESC was born. It is the first of its kind in the country!
The Middle Eastern student community now has a closer connection to the campus, activities and resources at UCR, and is an integral part of UCR’s unique and diverse community.
The MESC is at the forefront of improvement and change at UCR. Examples of this, include changing the UC application to include "Middle Eastern" as a self-identification choice, introducing halal meat as a campus dining option, establishing a Middle Eastern theme hall (Markaz in Pentland Hills) and helping organize the largest conference held at UCR with MSA West 2017.
The MESC continues to advocate for students and strives to continue making UCR a beacon of diversity and inclusivity within California and the country.