Students for fair trade

Jamie Eddy | Feature Editor | The USD Vista

This past Wednesday, April 13, the The Mulvaney Center, The Changemaker Hub, Center for Inclusion and Diversity, Office of Sustainability, and Students for Fair Trade from the University of San Diego held an event known as Morena’s Moment 2.0.

This unique affair was designed to activate energy around characteristics of “Community and Commerce,” and to highlight the many organizations and programs that seek out ethical creation and consumption. In addition, the event helped to promote the small local businesses at the bottom of the Linda Vista hill.  

Our school is constantly searching for innovative ways to collaborate and connect with people outside our direct USD bubble, and Morena’s Moment is one reflection of this commitment.

John Loggins, Director of Community-Based Student Leadership and Learning, spearheaded this event and brought the vision of Students for Fair Trade and the Mulvaney Center’s ideas to life.

“The Mulvaney Center for Community, Awareness and Social Action is committed to intentionally and meaningfully connecting with the community around us,” Loggins said. “Truly joining with community requires us to be innovative and open to the energy already present.  USD is lucky to be situated in the Linda Vista/Morena District, surrounded by wonderful craftspeople and innovative social entrepreneurs. We hope that this is just an opening event that will spark conversation, connection and opportunities for co-creation. In other words, we want to #DentTheBubble.”


The event was held in the parking lot at the USD Electronics Recycling Center from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Within a few hours, the simple concrete parking lot was completely transformed into a space draped with lights and filled with local business stands, food, photography, music and decorative tables for eating.  


Senior Allison Pluschkell was not aware of the E-Waste resource center and thought it was a great spot to have the event.

“I had no idea this space existed and I’m thrilled that I do now,” Pluschkell said. “The lot was the perfect size for the businesses, food, band, and everyone who was able to make it. I had a blast and it makes me happy to see events like this one be such a success because it reinforces the notion of community, engagement, and getting outside our immediate campus.”

In addition to the food and beverages, several student musicians from USD came to play tunes for the night, creating a fun atmosphere and energy throughout the evening. The band also helped to pump up the models during the fashion show.

The purpose behind the fashion show was to model fair trade products that keep ethical consumption and sustainability in mind.


Senior Rosalie Plofchan, an active member in Students for Fair Trade, helped bring together the fashion show aesthetic.

“For me, the best part of Morena’s Moment was seeing so many people come together from all over San Diego and linger about,” Plofchan said. “Something about the energy of the event kept people there for hours — curious about all the different booths, speakers, and entertainment. I had so much fun! I think there is a lot of potential for the future and hope USD will continue its efforts in collaborating and engaging with our neighbors in Morena, Linda Vista, and the SD Fair Trade movement.”

Maria Silva, Assistant Director of Community Engagement, is another key leader from the Mulvaney Center in putting on Morena’s Moment.

“It is amazing to see how spaces are activated when community members are present,” Silva said. “Morena’s Moment was a taste of how we can transform spaces by bringing community together, I know this seed was planted in everyone who participated and I look forward to seeing what lies ahead!”

Events such as Morena’s Moment 2.0 highlight all the time and energy spent on promoting and creating lasting relationships among a community of people that extends outside the confines of the USD campus.