Campus celebrates Asian culture

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By: Lucas Wimmer

UW-Whitewater will celebrate Asian Month throughout the month of April to teach students and faculty about different aspects of Asian culture.

Samantha Samreth, Southeast Asian Organization campus advisor, believes there is a lot people can learn through attending the events held for Asian month.

“The goal of Asian month is to share and educate our campus and community about the Southeast Asian people,” Samreth said. “This is an opportunity to learn more about each other’s history and culture.”

Samreth

Asian Heritage month has been celebrated in the United States since 1979, and has been celebrated on campus for the last 11 years. Asian Heritage month is typically in May, but is celebrated on campus in April because it gives students and faculty a full month to celebrate.

The events include a lecture from a Thai bakery owner, a documentary film about children from the Vietnam War era, a cultural show and an Asian food buffet.

Joy Yang, art director in Marketing and Media Relations and Asian Month committee member, expects that the Taste of Asia will be one of the most popular events.

“The Taste of Asia is where we share authentic food, and we usually get a very big turnout for that,” Yang said.

Taste of Asia will be held at 5 p.m. on April 24, at CrossPointe Community Church, 455 N. Warner Road.

The event had to be moved off-campus this year because of the number of people who attend the event annually, and will be held at a bigger venue this year to better accommodate people in attendance. The food at the event represents the many different Asian cultures and is cooked by students.

Mai Yer Yang, intergroup relations coordinator and Asian Month committee member, believes Taste of Asia plays an important role is Asian Month.

Joy Yang

“In order for a person to be able to explore a culture, the best way is through food,” Mai Yer Yang said.

Another event expected to be one of the most popular is the cultural show. The cultural show presents a contrast to the lectures and documentary, because it adds a performance aspect to the celebration.

“We usually get a pretty good number of people for that because it’s more visual and students like that,” Joy Yang said.

The cultural show will be held at 4 p.m. on April 11, in the Hamilton Room in the University Center.

Roberta’s Art Gallery will hold an exhibit entitled “Asia to America: Past, Present and Future,” chronicling students, alumni and faculty’s journey from Asia to America. The exhibit also will display traditional Asian clothing and artifacts.

The exhibit will have an opening reception at noon on April 15, in Roberta’s Art Gallery. The exhibit is open now and will run until April 25.

Samreth expects the exhibit will have at least 150 people walk throughout the exhibit, and that at least 500 people will attend the Asian Month events.

Mai Yer Yang

A documentary entitled “Operation Babylift: The Lost Children of Vietnam” will be shown at 3 p.m. on April 18 in Summers Auditorium in the University Center. The documentary explores the movement of Vietnamese people from Vietnam to America during the Vietnam War and their children, and how their lives are affected by that movement in today’s society.

The celebration of Asian month is sponsored by Multicultural Affairs and Student Success and is supported by Southeast Asian Student Services and the Southeast Asian student organizations on campus, Mai Yer Yang said.