Cultural Diversity Week helps students break down barriers

The Student Government Association’s Multicultural Committee sponsored Cultural Diversity Week at UTM from Oct. 29-Nov. 6.

Cultural Diversity Week kicked off with an International Student Tailgate Party held on the north end zone during the UTM vs. EKU home football game at Hardy Graham Stadium. More than 60 students attended the tailgate party.

On Halloween, about 70 students participated in a Multicultural Trick-or-Treat in the University Center, while 226 students took advantage of Around the World on One Plate on Tuesday, enjoying multicultural foods served in the UC Ballroom.

A Diversity Panel was held on Wednesday, during which about 100 students gathered in Watkins Auditorium to ask and answer cultural questions. During Salsa and Game Night on Thursday, also attended by about 100 people, students were given the opportunity to take salsa lessons.

Attendance dropped a bit during the weekend, with about 40 students attending a Multicultural Breakfast on Friday and about 60 students celebrating Sports Day on Saturday. Diversity Week ended Sunday, Nov. 6, with a Pasic World Showcase Concert in the Harriet Fulton Theater.

“We’ve learned a lot as far as what events bring large turnouts and the importance of publicizing the event so SGA will be able to use this knowledge in the future and potentially model future Diversity Weeks.,” said Holly Seng, a senator for the College of Humanities and Fine Arts.

“My goal for Diversity Week as the Multicultural Affairs Chair was to help break down cultural barriers on campus and impact students through the use of school spirit, conversation, food, music, sports, and dance,” said SGA Senator Nathan Daniels, an International Studies major. “I was very pleased with the student, faculty, staff, and administration turn out during this week, and I am very proud of our multicultural organizations and international students on campus. This was a very successful week and will serve as a highlight of my college career and final semester at UTM.

“Breaking down cultural barriers on campus has been a goal of mine since I came to UTM in the fall of 2012. In the fall of 2013, I founded the International Club in order to carry out this mission. I also serve as a peer mentor and tutor for international students,” Daniels said.
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