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Holidays Around the World Brings Diversity To Campus

By: Vaishnavi Peyyety, Red & Black Contributing Writer

Photo Courtesy: Vaishnavi Peyyety. Expanding knowledge of winter holidays, foods, and customs part of all cultures helps create a more inclusive
NOV.19 - Directors of Belonging and Engagement, Ryan Smith and Margie Schill collaborated to create a well-organized “Holidays Around the World”, a campus-wide event centered around celebrating various cultures. The Office of Belonging and Engagement sponsored this event on November 18th where students shared holiday traditions from cultures and religions around the world. Specifically, this event included Asian Cultural Association (ACA), Black Student Union (BSU), French Club, German Club, Hillel, Indian Student Association (ISA), and Spanish Club. Additionally, there were sample holiday treats from local vendor markets in Washington, Pa.

Photo Courtesy: Vaishnavi Peyyety. Student Organizations at Holidays Around the World included ACA, ISA, Spanish Club, BSU, French Club, German Club, and more!
ACA hosted a jeopardy game for prizes; ISA brought Chilli Paneer from a local restaurant; the Spanish club offered homemade Mexican hot chocolate; BSU educated students about Kwanza while Hillel celebrated Hannukah; the French and German clubs brought delicious food for students to try as well. This joyful collaboration of various student organizations proved to bring the campus community together as seen by the great turnout for the event.

Improving cultural awareness and promoting acceptance is vital to helping people feel comfortable and safe at W&J. Students of cultural organizations feel genuinely happy to see people make the effort to understand different cultures. Board member Pooja Potluri shared that she felt particularly touched when people came to this event and showed interest in learning about Indian holidays. “It makes me hopeful that we are fostering an inclusive environment at W&J.” Overall, there is enthusiasm for more cultural events on campus!
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