The National Hispanic University will host annual Day of the Dead Festival


The National Hispanic University in California will host its “Day of the Dead” celebration beginning on October 24. FYI –Day of the Dead (Spanish: Día de los Muertos) is a Mexican holiday celebrated throughout Mexico and around the world in other cultures. This year, it is celebrated from November 1 to November 2. During this time, families pay tribute to loved ones who have died.  Catrinas (shown) are often prominently featured in celebration.

The National Hispanic University (NHU) will host its third annual Day of the Dead—Dia de los Muertos—festival on Saturday, Oct. 27, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The festival is free to the public and will feature live music, cultural performances and procession, children’s activities, arts and crafts and a display of decorative altars and masks created by members of the community.

City councilmember Xavier Campos and the Hon. Carlos Ponce Martinez, consul general of Mexico, will address festival attendees about the cultural importance of the Day of the Dead. Additionally, performers such as Danza Azteca Cipactonalli, Reinas de la Bahia, Fuego Nuevo Ballet, Mariachi Tapatio, Sonora Santanera and Los Cadetes de Rigoberto Cantu are scheduled to perform.

“NHU is proud to once again host this cultural event where we can bring together the people of San Jose for this ancient celebration,” said Dr. David Lopez, president of NHU. “We have a strong tradition of giving back to our community, and this event provides us with the opportunity to engage with them while honoring the dead, commemorating our culture and celebrating the continuity of life.”

The university will partner again this year with the local YMCA to explain the cultural significance of this traditional Mexican holiday to youth in the area. Seventeen schools will participate in an after-school enrichment program, developed by NHU and the YMCA, designed to teach local youth how to create traditional Mexican masks. More than 500 masks will be created and exhibited at the festival. A panel of judges will vote on the masks and altars created by the students and community and award prizes for the most elaborate and interesting designs.

Leading up to the Day of the Dead festival, the university will host several activities and events on campus, including a reception and presentation by author and photographer Mary J. Andrade on Wednesday, Oct. 24, at 5:15 p.m. Andrade will discuss her travels throughout Mexico documenting the Dia de los Muertos celebrations. Approximately 40 pieces of her photography will be on display. There will also be an art exhibit featuring 14 artists and their interpretations of the Day of the Dead.

About The National Hispanic University
For 30 years, The National Hispanic University has provided Hispanic students and others with access to quality higher education. Located in San Jose, Calif., the university offers a diverse portfolio of online and campus-based undergraduate, graduate and certificate programs in business, teacher education, child development and computer science. Students are supported in a multicultural and collaborative learning environment that is based on Familia™, a personalized approach that fosters students’ success through mutual respect and cultura. The National Hispanic University, a member of the Laureate International Universities network, is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.