Raquel Coronell Uribe makes Harvard history as student newspaper’s first Latina president in 148 years

From JFK to Jeff Zucker, Harvard Crimson has been home to some of the US’s brightest minds

Bevan Hurley
Tuesday 16 November 2021 18:05
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<p>Raquel Coronell Uribe will become the first Latina president in the history of the Harvard Crimson</p>

Raquel Coronell Uribe will become the first Latina president in the history of the Harvard Crimson

She fled Colombia at age six after her father received death threats for his investigative journalism, and was diagnosed with leukemia at 16.

Seven years later, Raquell Coronell Uribe has been named as the first Latina president of one of America’s most esteemed college newspapers, The Harvard Crimson.

Ms Coronell Uribe was named the “149th guard” of a paper whose past leaders include former United States presidents John F Kennedy and Franklin D Roosevelt, Pulitzer Prize winner Linda Greenhouse, Chairman of WarnerMedia Jeff Zucker, and CNBC’s Jim Cramer.

Ms Coronell Uribe was chosen after a lengthy selection process known as the “Turkey Shoot”, where she had to sit through dozens of interviews before being selected by the paper’s current student executive team for a one-year term.

Ms Coronell Uribe’s father and mother were well-known journalists in her home country.

They had to flee with just a few suitcases to California after her father, Daniel Coronell, began receiving death threats for his investigative journalism work.

“The Committee to Protect Journalists is an organisation that quite literally saved my life,” she told the Washington Post.

Diagnosed with leukemia aged 16, she says coming “face-to-face” with her own mortality at such a young age led her towards a career in medicine.

The family later moved back to Colombia and her father became president of Univision News, before returning to live in Miami.

But after starting to study medicine at Harvard, she felt the pull of journalism again and the student newspaper became her campus “home”, and she became a history and literature major.

Previously covering the police accountability round and editing its newsletters, Ms Coronell Uribe has pledged to continue to uphold the paper’s tradition of holding the powerful to account.

Harvard’s newspaper originally began life as the Magenta in 1873, before becoming the Crimson in 1875.

According to its website, more than 25 Crimson alumni have won Pulitzer Prizes. It has gone from a fortnightly paper to being published daily, and claims to be the nation’s oldest continuously published daily college newspaper.

“The 149th Guard is an incredibly impressive group of leaders who are more than ready and qualified to tackle the challenges The Crimson will face in the coming year,” current Crimson President Amanda Y Su said.

Mr Roosevelt served as president in the class of 1904, Mr Kennedy in ‘40, AuthorMichael Crichton in 1960, Ms Greenhouse in ‘68 and Mr Zucker in 1986.

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