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The Independent Student Voice of NMSU Since 1907

NMSU Round Up

The Independent Student Voice of NMSU Since 1907

NMSU Round Up

Traditional corn husk dolls provide insight into Latinx culture

Perla Carrillo Arias
Three completed corn husk dolls propped up on March 5, 2024. The dolls were part of a corn husk doll-making event put on by Chicano Programs.

Students from different backgrounds gathered in Domenici Hall on March 7 for an artistic doll-making event put on by student leaders in Chicano Programs at New Mexico State University. Students put their creative abilities to the test in accompaniment of music, food and good company.  

Chicano Programs, in coordination with the New Mexico Dream team and the Latin American Council, sponsored a week-long series of events that aimed to promote Hispanic culture and traditions in honor of Latine week. Other events during the week included playing games of loteria, movie nights and more.  

The weeklong events were hosted to educate the public on Hispanic culture and customs, according to Zarya Martinez, who is a leader with the NMSU Dream Team and general member of the Latin American Council.  

Martinez was the student who came up with the idea of making cornhusk dolls.  

“[I thought] it would be a fun activity,” she said. “It’s not that costly, it’s pretty simple, it’s really fun, and it’s a very traditional way of making toys in Mexico and such. Of course, there is that intersection between indigenous cultures in North America as well as Mexico.”  

Students are focused on their artistic creations, intentionally placing each part of the corn husk doll. March 5, 2024. (Perla Carrillo Arias)

Cornhusk dolls are a staple in indigenous and Native American cultures. The dolls are made from corn husks and used as toys for children.  

The New Mexico Dream team is an organization that aims to empower students and individuals who are undocumented, multigenerational, LGBTQ+, and other mixed status families towards liberation, according to its website. The organization aims to “dismantle systemic oppression.” 

A sizeable number of students filled the room and gave their full attention to student leaders from the Dream team, who played a big role in the organization of this event. Food was also provided by Arik Ruiz, the owner of Alma’s Kitchen.  

Mila Delgado, a dual-credit student at NMSU who attended the event, said she was able to learn and experience something new.  

“It’s really fun, I love it,” Delgado said. “It’s something new and it got me out of my house.” 

Chicano programs is a student affairs office under the office of Equity, Inclusion and Diversity. The program creates events that showcase Latin / Latinx culture.  

Director of Chicano Programs, Rio Lopez, said students who attend these types of events are given a great opportunity to learn new things and to get involved with the organization.  

“A lot of people maybe are unfamiliar with Chicano Programs and what is it that what we do, so these spaces really open up the door and demonstrate this is for everybody, everyone can learn, everybody is welcome to build community, to network, to get resources and to learn,” Lopez said. “I think that is the most important thing.”  

This week’s series of events was done with the support of the Associated Students of New Mexico State University, Lopez said. They also mentioned other events that have been done have been in collaboration with other organizations and departments. This event in particular was done with ASNMSU funds.

The organizers of the Latine week event pose for a picture (from left to right): Jovanny Sebastian Hernandez, Zayra Martinez-S, Karla Robles-Guzman. (Perla Carrillo Arias)

Lopez said that anyone is always welcome to attend events put on by Chicano Programs, and that students do not need to identify with being Chicano, Latinx, etc. to attend events.  

“The general message [is] to make everyone feel included, to promote educational resources that are accessible to all students,…identify what are the barriers for our students, that our student population faces in general, and how can we as Chicanx Programs, or from our positions in the university, what can we do to support students in navigating those barriers and to address them,”  Lopez said. 

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About the Contributors
Noah Apodaca
Noah Apodaca, Staff Writer

Noah Apodaca is a junior at New Mexico State University, where he is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Media Studies with an emphasis in broadcast, as well as a minor in government. This is Noah's first year with The Round Up. 

Born and raised in Las Cruces, New Mexico, Noah got his start in the media industry in 2022, when he joined KRWG-TV's News22 program as a writer, reporter and anchor. With News22, he has covered a wide range of topics, including traveling to the 2023 Conference USA Championship game in Lynchburg, Virginia. 

In addition to News22, Noah has worked with NMSU's journalism department’s online news publication, Kokopelli, KFOX14 in El Paso, Texas, and U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich.

In his spare time, you can catch Noah at the gym, at the airport fulfilling his love of travel, or at home streaming some Disney+ alongside his five dogs. He is ecstatic to join The Round Up team this year!

Perla Carrillo Arias
Perla Carrillo Arias, Photojournalism Intern
Perla Carrillo Arias is entering her first semester at The Round Up as a photojournalism intern. She is a senior at NMSU, majoring in Business Marketing with a focus on Advertising and a minor Social Media Management. Perla was born and raised in Santa Fe, New Mexico. A passionate traveler and avid reader, Perla finds inspiration in exploring new places and immersing herself in diverse experiences. Perla’s love for photography and videography sprouted when she was a just little girl. She reminisces going through hundreds of photographs her mom has captured and having the realization of how important it is to have memories. When she’s not behind the lens, Perla can be found indulging in her love for literature, spending time with her family, or tuning into thought-provoking podcasts that ignite her curiosity. Perla is looking forward to acquiring knowledge from the team and further developing her photographic skills at The Round Up.

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