Going off to college can be a scary, yet thrilling rite of passage. Everything is different, but what happens when you start missing home? You bring home to your new university.

And that's exactly what El Paso freshman Isaiah Herrera did when he arrived at Baylor University. According to the Baylor Lariat, Herrera has started the first ever student-led Mariachi band at the university- and much to the surprise of the university, it has flourished.

I say it's surprising to the university because to us El Pasoans, it's not as surprising to hear that one of our own has gone out to start amazing things.

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And it really shouldn't be surprising because, although mariachi music originates from Mexico, it can be enjoyed and appreciated by people all over the world. Mariachi music grows in popularity every year, we see it beautifully interpreted in Japan by groups like Mariachi Samurai.

And we even see some of our rockin' favorites interpreted by groups like Metalachi.

So when Herrera, who grew up playing music, arrived at Baylor and realized there was no Mariachi band, he knew this was the perfect time to start one. He began talking to friends who were also interested in Mariachi music, and before too long, Mariachi Osos Dorados was born.

According to the Baylor Lariat, although sometimes the progress seems slow, Mariachi Osos Dorados (or, Golden Bears) are not discouraged and are hopeful that interest in the group will only grow in the future. Herrera told the Lariat:

My goal is to see it carry on for years and years, even after I leave.


As a lifelong El Pasoan, and a lover of Mariachi music, I'm super proud of Isaiah Herrera, and I'm sure many El Pasoans are too. I hope Herrera feels like he has all of El Paso behind him, encouraging him to continue to make El Paso proud. You can follow Mariachi Osos Dorados journey on Instagram.

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