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The Department of Health Sciences is pleased to recognize the following observances and celebrations for the month of January:

New Year’s Day

January 1, 2023

On January 1 of every year, people ring in the New Year with resolutions to change and festive parties. Learn more about the history of New Year’s Day. 

Vaikunta Ekadasi (Hindu)

January 2, 2023

Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, it is believed that on this day, the gate to heaven opens. Common traditions include fasting, worshipping, meditating and singing.

Gurpurab (Sikh)

January 5, 2023

Commemorating the birthday of Guru Gobind Singh Sahib, the tenth Sikh Guru, known as the Father of Khalsa. Common traditions include reading religious texts, praying, singing and eating large festive meals.

Pongal (Hindu)

January 15, 2023

Share greetings like, “Wishing you a happy Pongal!” “May the festival of Pongal fill your life with sweetness!” or “May God bless you with peace, prosperity, and happiness in your life.”

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

January 16, 2023

Martin Luther King, Jr. (MLK) Day was designed to honor the activist and minister assassinated in 1968, whose accomplishments have continued to inspire generations of Americans. On the third Monday of each January, the nation pauses in remembrance of a civil rights hero. Learn more about the history of this holiday.

UNC-Chapel Hill provides a calendar of Holy Days and Observances as a resource for education and accommodation. The Department of Health Sciences will share monthly observances and recognitions as a part of its commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.