Students gather for the Viva La Cultura event on the Quad. Photo by Klarke Stricklen (C’22).
By Klarke Stricklen
Between September 15 and Ocotber 15, HOLA, Adelante, and the Spanish department celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month. The two student groups and academic departments collaborated to create a month long program of events. National Hispanic Heritage Month celebrates the history, culture, and contributions of American citizens whose heritage can be traced back to Mexico, Spain, the Carribean, and Central and South America. The month long celebration began on September 15 and ended on October 15.
In a brief conversation with The Purple, Alexis Carillo (C’22), President of HOLA, explained the importance of celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month with the college campus. “[Celebrating] Hispanic Heritage Month is important because it allows hispanics to know their past and the rough patches that they went through [throughout history]. It [also] allows other [students] to have a better understanding of our history.”
This year, students of the mentioned organizations held events that spanned from collaborations with McClurg Dining Hall through its Food Literacy program with Chef Caroline Thompson, a historical exhibition on the first floor of Dupont Library that featured renowned Hispanic leaders from every genre of the culture, and various cultural events that allowed students to engage with members from all organizations.
The annual Viva La Cultura event, one of the biggest cultural events held, amassed a spirited crowd on the lawn of the Quad on October 10. The event featured cultural dishes such as Pupusas and tacos for participants to try. The function also included games frequently played in Latin countries.
“Viva La Culture allows students to come out and and have fun while at the same time we are able to spread awareness [about] our culture,” said Maria Ramirez, co-director of Adelante.
Both student run organizations hope that students, faculty, and staff were able to attend at least one of the events held throughout the month of celebration. The organizations will continue to raise awareness surrounding Hispanic culture throughout the year with a host of programming open to all community members.