Musician Spotlight: Q&A with School of Art Senior Heidi Garcia

By Faith Orcino

Word Count: 597

Cougar Chronicle: What is the degree you will be graduating with?

Heidi Garcia: Bachelor of Arts in Visual and Performing Arts Emphasis in Music and Minors in Video Production and Women’s Studies.

CC: What is your musical specialty? How long have you been perfecting your craft? Did you have to overcome some difficulties along the way?

HG: I am a singer; it’s weird to call myself that, but I have been singing since I discovered who Selena (Quintanilla, not Gomez) was. It wasn’t until I was in middle school that I decided to get involved in choir. As an artist, I do have my doubts about what it means to be a singer sometimes. I love singing as a hobby and occasional performances because I love the music family that gets created in any ensemble I have ever had the privilege to be a part of. As a career, however, I fear I will lose the love and passion I have for music (it’s a small doubt but there). Nevertheless, I will continue to do what I love.

CC: How was your time here in CSUSM? Did you start here as a freshman or transfer from another school? As being part of the inaugural graduating class of the School of Art, has there been changes in the quality of the School?

HG: I started here at CSUSM as a freshman. In all my five years here, I have had the honor to watch our university grow in size and in numbers. I love this school because we are constantly evolving. Our music department alone has come a long way, with the recent addition of a Music Major coming this fall. Because our university is still fairly young, we, as a community, have the privilege to be a part of CSUSM history.  In my five years here, I have seen the SBSB building, the USU, the Veterans Center, the Quad, the Health Center, as well as many other things come to life.

CC: What do you have in plan for your postgraduate future?

HG: I love music, I love singing; it’s my escape from reality, my Zen; however through my minors in Video Production and Women’s Studies I have discovered something empowering. The power of media and how that affects our society. In high school, I always struggled with my body image, it wasn’t until I took my first Women’s Studies class that I felt empowered to not feel ashamed for not fitting the beauty standards society has structured for women. Therefore, it wasn’t until recently that I decided to go back to school next year to get my Masters in Fine Arts and a PhD in Gender or Women’s Studies, so that I can focus on creating videos of some kind to promote body positivity in young girls. Singing is my passion, but children are our future. So I say why not go back to school? Why not make a difference? Why not?

CC: Is there anyone (or a number of people) you would like to thank or give recognition?

HG: As a woman of faith, I’d like to thank God. As a first generation Latina to graduate, I’d like to thank my mom for raising me as a single mother, my sisters for always pushing me to keep going, my brother and his wife for supporting me, my friends and coworkers for always being there for me, as well as Dr. Ching-Ming Cheng, Dr. Pamela Redela and Professor Kristine Diekman for encouraging me to continue with my studies. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.