Festival of Cultures

Ferris celebrates diversity through annual festival

Inspiring words: Jung Choi, assistant professor at Ferris in the department of accountancy finance and information systems, shares his South Korean culture with students by writing out some uplifting words in Korean lettering at last year’s annual International Festival of Cultures. This Sunday, the Dome Room will again be bustling with dancing, a pinata, international foods and more. Photo courtesy of Shana Beisiegel
The annual International Festival of Cultures will celebrate varying backgrounds from around the world on Sunday, April 11.

“There will be dancers demonstrating Latin Dancing, musical instruments, singing, a piñata, and we are still adding entertainment,” said Shana Beisiegel, secretary of the International Center at FSU.

One of the performances includes second year music industry management major Alice Dabandons. In her second year as a participant of the festival, Dabandons will be performing a Laotian dance with six other girls from the Asian Students Organization (ASO).

Dabandons said the event is something that students from many cultures look forward to every year at Ferris.

“Culture shapes who you are,” said Dabandons. “If you somehow lose that, you end up losing a part of yourself that you should always have with you.”

FSU pharmacy student Truc D. Nguyen will be participating for the third year in a row. Nguyen will be a part of a Laos dance and a Vietnamese dance.

“For the Vietnamese dance, wearing our cultural clothes and dancing is supposed to represent elegance and gracefulness,” said Nguyen. “Our dance though is not too traditional because we added a little bit here and there from modern styles.”

Christine, Ashley, and Julia Vue, sisters and Ferris students, choreographed three dances together this year: two traditional Hmong dances and one Laos dance.

“Ever since we were young my parents have always encouraged my sisters and I to keep up with the tradition [of dancing], including performing for our Hmong New Years,” said Christine Vue, FSU pre-pharmacy student. “It has always been a part of us and something we enjoy doing.”

In addition to performances, there will also be food from a variety of different cultures cooked by Ferris faculty, students, and staff.

“We are also having a 10,000 Village Fair Trade sale that will be taking place at the same time in the Founder’s Room,” said Beisiegel.

The sale will include handmade jewelry, home décor, and various other items. The profit made from these items goes toward bettering the lives of thousands of artisans in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East.

The International Festival of Cultures will take place on April 11 from 1 to 5 p.m. in the Rankin Student Center Dome Room. The entertainment is free and each food ticket costs 50 cents and can be purchased prior to the festival at the International Center in FLITE. For more information, contact Shana Beisiegel at beisies@nullferris.edu or ext. 2824. n