Hernandez says he was thrilled and surprised by the project. “The quality of the work was impressive,” he says. Because the project demanded that students explore and share their feelings in a public venue, Hernandez says he wasn’t sure how students would react to it. “But they completely embraced it,” he says. “In some senses I was surprised at how much they embraced it.”
“We are a country with very few traditions,” adds Hernandez. “This is a strong tradition in Europe—the Mediterranean, Italy, Spain, Greece, even France. The students there participate in the tradition. They enjoy it. They look forward to it. They are really proud of it.” He was happy to see SCU students have a taste of that pride.
In that tradition, he explains, each village has a signature or representative giant that they use in all its parades. “Maybe one day we will have a Santa Clara giant,” he muses.
— Elizabeth Kelley Gillogly ’93 is the contributing editor of Santa Clara Magazine.