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East Meets West Celebrates Diversity

Updated: Dec 9, 2023

By Joanna Reid

East Meets West was hosted by the International Student Society (ISS) in the UC Ballroom on Thursday, Nov. 16 with approximately 150 guests in attendance. 

Students from the Korean Entertainment and Culture Club after performing dances to songs by K-Pop groups: NewJeans, WINNER, BLACKPINK, NCT 127, aespa, and KARD.

“East Meets West is a signature and the most significant event hosted by the International Student Society for more than five years. It's not just an event; it's a day every international student eagerly awaits for during the International Education Week,” said Nino Burjanadze, president of ISS. “On this day, everyone has the chance to proudly express and showcase their culture, country and heritage.”

TThe event highlighted performances from several groups. The InitJ dance group performed. Members of the Korean Entertainment and Culture Club danced to K-Pop songs. Junior Rohaan Qazi performed songs by Frank Sinatra and Alana Bernstein, also a junior, represented the South Asian Student Association, presenting a traditional dance. 

Nino Burjanadze, a student and president of ISS, is from the country Georgia and wore her traditional attire to participate in the event’s fashion show.

Tables from different clubs and cultures were also put on display around the ballroom. Students from the country Georgia created a poster that educated others on history, key figures and symbols of the country. The students who created the poster seemed excited to talk to others about the country they were from. One student explained that an important symbol of Georgia is women and there was once a woman in power who was referred to as a king.  Another poster was created for Japan. It broke down common stereotypes that Japanese people face, stating, “Not! all Japanese people are good at math!!” The poster also listed fun facts about Japan like its capital city (Tokyo), the currency used (yen) and its current population (125 million). Additionally, the poster featured pictures from different anime, popularized by Japan. The table that represented Japan gave guests the chance to make candy sushi, decorate paper fans, and make origami. 

Some of the other presenters included a table for Chinese culture where Dr. Monica Yang taught guests how to write using Chinese calligraphy, a table representing Indian culture, which offered henna tattoos, and the Society of East Asian Students’ table allowed visitors to make and decorate their own lantern. 

Towards the end of the event, dinner was served with food from different cuisines. There was also a fashion show where students could show off an outfit representing their culture and a competition to see who could eat spicy ramen the fastest. 

Freshman Sharon Lim was there on behalf of The Korean Entertainment and Culture Club. She said, “This is my first year here, so it’s really interesting to see the different cultures get together and all the different performances. I think it's important for us to know about other cultures because it's not just us in this world and I think it’s really nice that the ISS set up this event.”

Burjanadze said, “We encourage students to take the lead in educating both students and faculty about their traditions through various activities such as table displays, performances, fashion shows and fun games. East Meets West is an event that celebrates the diversity represented at Adelphi University and helps us international students to foster a global community on campus.”

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