RAZA’s Dia de los Muertos Celebration!

Ahh, the holidays! I love this time of year! It feels so good to think back to the many traditions I carried out with my family, the happiness that filled the room, and all the memories of delicious food I didn’t have to feel guilty about eating. I have to admit, once the holidays started coming around, I felt a little sad being away from my family and being on the other side of the country. Don’t worry though, the short time I felt sad quickly turned into time to celebrate a new way to spend the holidays.

One thing I love about being here is that Harvard gives you the opportunity to take part in and share new traditions in this new stage of your life. The small tight-knit communities ready to welcome you in have definitely shaped my Harvard experience. An example of one of the small families I’ve made here can be seen in the Latino community.  It’s great to see everyone come together to celebrate events and keep these new traditions going.

One of the traditions we’ve been able to continue to celebrate is El Dia de los Muertos (The Day of the Dead)- a traditional Mexican holiday where we celebrate the memory of our loved ones who have passed away. It’s so much fun to dip into that Mexican culture I miss so much from home. Not only did I have a chance to celebrate the holiday, I was able to help organize an event that brought the holiday to the students and community here at Harvard.

Harvard-Radcliffe RAZA, a Mexican-American student organization founded in 1972 here at the college, throws an annual Dia de los Muertos celebration and since I was lucky enough to be on the Board of Officers, I was able to take part in continuing this tradition. The event took place in Leverett (one of the residential houses at Harvard) and we had performances from Mariachi Veritas, Harvard’s Ballet Folklórico de Aztlan, and even had La Piñata Dance Troupe (a group of middle school students from Jamaica Plain in Boston) perform. It was an AMAZING time. We also had a traditional altar in honor of those who have passed away and even had face painting for those who wanted to don the imagery of a Calavera, or skull.

The Altar at the Celebration!

And to top it all off, we had the event catered by a nearby Mexican restaurant with a nice helping of Pan Dulce (Mexican Sweet Bread) to finish the meal with something sweet.

It was definitely a memorable night and even though I miss home, it felt great being able to celebrate my Mexican culture with song, dance, and food I don’t have to feel guilty about eating. The ability to come together and share my Mexican culture with the diverse student body here at Harvard was almost as sweet as the Pan Dulce.

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  1. ikenna gabriel ifenna’s avatar

    please i want to celebrate with you as well. Harvard university have been the dream of my life. when each day passes i see my self in harvard because i know that God have made it possible for me. send me the necessary information please on how to apply.

    1. Jesse Sanchez’s avatar

      Hello there! It’s great to see your enthusiasm! I think the best way to find out how to apply is by checking out the admissions website at:


      Hope it helps!

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