As a Hispanic student (specifically Mexican), I am sometimes wary when I hear of cultural events occuring on campus because of stereotypes and prexisting beliefs held by some. Especially at an institution like UT Dallas, with a diverse student population, it’s important that all cultures are accurately showcased as students strive to learn more about each other.
Recently, I attended UT Dallas’ Cinco de Mayo event at the Plinth. I was extremely ecstatic to see how UT Dallas had chosen to recognize the day, since Cinco de Mayo is not celebrated in Mexico, only in the United States. MASA (Mexican-American Student Association) and the rest of the organizations there did a good job explaining that Cinco de Mayo was not truly a Mexican celebration. They had questions that allowed students to learn about the truth behind the celebration and about how Cinco de Mayo was a celebration about the battle of Puebla, not the independence of Mexico.
In general the event was great and I’m glad that they’re working on representing all cultures at UT Dallas and exposing truths about different celebrations that may be misconceived. I’m glad that my culture is making an effort to change our stereotype and I hope that other cultures also feel comfortable doing so.
Ana Ablanedo Morales
B.S. Child Learning & Development
Class of 2020
The University of Texas at Dallas