Empty room in Nebraska Union where murals will be installed
A mural will soon be featured in the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Nebraska Union on the left and right white walls besides the large N, a location where students pass through every day to reach the food court. NNS/Abigail Carrera.

This summer, the Multicultural Greek Council will have its own painted mural in the Nebraska Union to represent its multicultural Greek organizations and minority students.

Renata Cadena, a freshman majoring in Criminology and Criminal Justice and Forensic Science, created a bill within the Association of Students of the University of Nebraska. ASUN serves and represents the UNL student body and addresses student concerns to UNL officials. 

Bill 6 is also known as the Multicultural Greek Council Mural and was passed in late April. 

“It’s a mural representing the eight organizations, sororities and fraternities, that are under the Multicultural Greek Council currently at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in the 2021 and 2022 school year,” Cadena said.

unnamed 1 - Nebraska Union to feature a multicultural Greek mural
Renata Cadena, Delta Xi Nu Multicultural Sorority, Inc. Photo courtesy of Renata Cadena.

Cadena was first introduced to the bill in Freshman Campus Leadership Association and came up with the idea when she joined the Delta Xi Nu Multicultural Sorority, Inc., which was established on UNL in 2018, and is a part of MGC. 

“A mural would be really nice, it would solve a couple problems with visibility that keep being brought up on campus,” Cadena said. 

Cadena reached out to multiple people and organizations for approval and planning. 

“I definitely branched out to a lot of people like the vice chancellor of student affairs, the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, my own org Delta Xi Nu, the other seven MGC organizations, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, our Chancellor for the university, and just the president of ASUN,” Cadena said. 

Cadena also met with building management in several locations around campus to see where the mural could be painted at. Some locations in mind were the Kauffman residential buildings, Jackie Gaughan Multicultural Center, and Love Library. 

In late April, Cadena got the approval for the mural to be in the Nebraska Union 

from the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Laurie Bellows.

Although the bill was passed, Cadena ran into a few barriers along the way. The main barrier was the location of the mural.

“It was definitely hard to get a location, mainly because I was always having a conversation with the wrong person and then they would lead me to another person and it would still be the wrong person,” Cadena said. 

Cadena is currently working with Bellows on finding someone to paint the mural. All of the colors and symbols from the MGC fraternities and sororities will be incorporated into the mural.

“I would really like someone that’s of ethnic background to paint it just so it’s a little more personal,” Cadena said. 

Right now, there is currently only one design in the works. Every MGC organization will work with the chosen muralist to put their design altogether. When it is painted, MGC Greek members who were active and inactive but on good terms with their organization and the council in the 2020-2021 school year, will sign their name or line name on it. 

Edwin Mendez-Rodriguez is the current treasurer for Sigma Lambda Beta International fraternity, the oldest Greek organization within the MGC at UNL. 

“I think this mural will help with the exposure of different cultural and under-represented organizations on campus,” Mendez-Rodriguez said. 

The mural is set to be completed by August 2022 to promote visibility and awareness of multiculturalism.