Stanford University
Emiliano Zapata

Casa Zapata is Stanford’s Chican@/Latin@ theme dorm. The first Mexican-American student to attend Stanford was Helen Gertrude Domínguez (1898-1987), who graduated in 1920 with a BA in English. After her, only a handful of Latin@ students attended Stanford until the 1970s, when gradually larger numbers of minority students began to be admitted to the university. Casa Zapata was founded in 1972 as a place for the growing community of Mexican-American (Chican@) students at Stanford to live together, share experiences, and feel at home.

Since 1972, Casa Zapata has changed along with Stanford and the country as a whole. It now also serves as a home for numerous students of South American, Central American, and Caribbean descent as well as international students and many non-Latin@ students interested in Latin@ culture or simply looking to live in a dorm that foregrounds compassion, culture, and community. For this reason, we speak of Casa Zapata as a Chican@/Latin@ theme dorm — a classification that pays homage to our rich past (and its many struggles) while pointing to a broadly framed present and future in which Stanford students who identify in different ways can live together and make the most of Stanford. At Casa Zapata we often use terms like familia and comunidad (not to mention the common cry of “Zapata love!”), and we take them seriously. Ours is a place of inclusion and safety for anyone looking to live here or just visit.


From Bestia to Zapatón, Casa Zapata is home to many traditions. These make us distinctive as an ethnic-theme dorm and connect us to the broader community.

Upcoming Events

Have a look at some of the bigger events happening soon in Casa Zapata! Nearly all of our events are free and open to the Stanford community.


Browse an informative selection of public health resources provided to students by our Public Health Educator (PHE), Carolina Ornelas.

From the RCC

Yvette Ramírez, our Resident Computer Consultant (RCC), has put together a useful guide to student computing at Stanford. Check it out!