culture

This Afro-Latina Has Gone Viral After Dedicating This Over-The-Top Graduation Photoshoot To Her Culture

@s4mlita / Twitter

We love graduation season. It gives us a chance to applaud the next generation of high school and college graduates, and also be amazed at how they honor their family and Latino heritage. There is nothing better than giving your own culture a chance to shine on such a special day. That’s exactly what Samantha Sheppard did with a beautiful and culturally relevant graduation photo shoot.

Samantha Sheppard, 21, is the first to graduate from college in her family and celebrated by having a gorgeous photoshoot.

Twitter/@s4mlita 

“First one in my family with a degree,” she tweeted on April 20. “Finally telling my parents that everything they did is paying off…had to show out for the first gens for my grad shoot. 100% Panameña, living the American dream.”

Her tweet went viral and has been liked almost 40,000 times.

Twitter/@s4mlita

“I love the fact that my culture is being spread everywhere because we deserve it!! as a biracial female at a PWI, it means sooooo much,” she tweeted.

PWI is an acronym for predominately white institution.

Sheppard said she was happy her tweet went viral so people could learn more about Panamanian culture.

Twitter/@s4mlita

“Holy sh*t this sh*t really went f*cking viral… like whatttttt. not too many people know about Panamanian culture or how hard we really work so out of all the things that could’ve gotten this big, I’m glad it’s this.”

Here’s more about Sheppard, her family, and how she helps them any way she can.

Sheppard graduated with a degree in psychology and philosophy. She said that she is also currently working at a center for autism and related disorders.

“I have a very knowledgeable background in behavioral therapy and ABA and I’ve done extensive cognitive and neuropsych and neuroscience research with two profs at LSU,” Samantha tweeted.

People on social media were so moved by her incredible photoshoot.

Her dress was definitely a showstopper. Her headdress is worth another photoshoot on its own.

Panama is getting so much love, thanks to Sheppard’s tweet.

We wonder if her family back home found out about her viral tweet. It must be a really nice feeling to know that you are helping people learn about your culture and your people.

Her parents must be beyond proud of their daughter.

We can’t wait to see what is next for this inspiring young woman.

Congrats, Samantha!

READ: Here’s What This Undocumented College Grad Has To Say About The Haters Threatening Her With ICE For Celebrating Her Graduation

This Elementary School Held A Flash Mob Where Kids Dressed Up And Danced To Selena And Celia Cruz And I’m Crying At My Desk

Culture

This Elementary School Held A Flash Mob Where Kids Dressed Up And Danced To Selena And Celia Cruz And I’m Crying At My Desk

The fear of losing our Latinidad as our kids learn to assimilate to American culture is very real. As new and older generations come and go, younger Latinos born in the U.S. are less likely to speak Spanish, and know how to cook certain recipes or the moves of certain dances. Fortunately, one elementary located in the city of Los Angeles, California is taking literal steps and classes to ensure la cultura never dies.

In a recent post to the elementary school’s Facebook page, little kids are seen putting on a performance of Selena’s “La Caracha.”

[Click the image to watch the video]

In the video posted to Facebook, dozens of kindergarten students from Euclid Avenue Elementary are seen dancing along to “La Carcacha.” While the boys wear leather vests, the girls are suited up in outfits that channel Selena’s purple jumpsuit.

But the display of vida did NOT stop there.

The event soon turned into a display of Afro-Latina celebration when the school’s second graders turned up for Celia Cruz

Like just LOOK at all of those little Celia’s in training dancing to “La Vida Es Un Carnaval.”

And because the party could just not stop the school’s First Graders danced to “Un Poco Loco” from Coco.

Honestly, my heart is about to burst watching these little guys expertly dance to the “Coco” theme song. And not only are the kids wearing the sweetest traditional outfits the little boys are wearing fake guitars!!!!

Guys!! And The Third Graders Dance the Tarantela!

And there goes my heart. Bursting into a million little pieces and being simultaneously full again.

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