Puerto Rican Culture
General Attitudes. Puerto Ricans are sensitive people, quick to express sympathy and equally quick to resent a slight. They are gregarious and fond of fiestas (celebrations). They admire people who are intelligent, hardworking, dedicated, and humble. Puerto Ricans consider open criticism, aggressiveness, and greed offensive. Many believe a person’s destiny is God’s will, although individuals must also watch for opportunities. Puerto Ricans value a good education, and a large number of students not only finish high school but also attend college or another institution of higher learning. Gaining a good education is considered a key to a better future. Being able to buy land for a home or business is a universal goal. National and regional pride are strong. Political influence is desirable; individuals
who have such power are admired. The Puerto Rican concept of time is somewhat relaxed. If a friend, relative, or
business associate drops in unexpectedly, Puerto Ricans will stop everything they are doing to visit, even if they have other commitments. Though attitudes toward the U.S.–Puerto Rico relationship vary, most people are satisfied with the island’s current status, fearing that independence might bring poverty and statehood could mean a loss of cultural identity.
hosts may appreciate a gift of flowers, candy, or fruit. If offered, gifts are opened in the presence of the giver.
of Puerto Rico, with its nine campuses and 45,000 students. Other institutions include the Inter-American University, Catholic University, Turabo University, Sacred Heart University, and Puerto Rico Junior College. The literacy rate is higher among the youth than adults.