diversity

Cultural Involvement at Florida State

August 7, 2015 in Alive Campus, Colleges

It can certainly be argued that Florida State makes an effort for its students to be culturally involved, whether its through its academics or the several different programs and events offered throughout the semester. No matter your personality, there are multiple ways to explore a variety of cultures at FSU, even if it’s simply by taking a language class for a semester or two. For those who are more interested in becoming extremely involved, here are some suggestions:

First Year Abroad: Florida State strongly encourages students to study abroad, especially out-of-state students. If an incoming out of state freshman studies abroad for their entire first year, they will receive in-state tuition for the remainder of college, which is a huge plus for those paying full price out-of-state tuition. It also is an amazing experience that students should take advantage of if they are passionate about traveling. The few students I spoke to that studied abroad their first year have claimed it was the best of their college experience yet since they were able to completely immerse themselves in another culture.

Academic Classes: Several international classes are offered as general electives to students, which are always good to take senior year when trying to fill your schedule. Additionally, there are many unique language classes offered, such as Chinese, Japanese, French, and so on, which are surprisingly popular here at FSU. This coming semester, I am registered to take an International Food and Culture course as a general elective.

The School of Theatre is huge at Florida State and one of the most popular majors at the university, as it certainly works to highlight diversity. The arts program holds multiple dance and theatre performances throughout the year, in which talented students of different backgrounds perform over 500 times. The College of Fine Arts every year hosts the Paint Around Gala Auction, which is an event held in order to support Art and Dance Education at FSU. Jazz music is played throughout the event and students paint at their canvases while students mingle. The event raises thousands of dollars that goes towards scholarships in art and dance for the FSU community.

Greek Life: There are tons of sororities and fraternities to choose from at Florida State. Students are given the opportunity to become involved with a diverse group and learn about one another through common interests. It certainly is one of the best ways to become culturally involved at FSU, especially with all of the community work that these organizations do.

The Center for Global Engagement is offered at FSU in order to allow the students to become more globally engaged and communicate across different cultures. Held in the Globe building on campus, different events are offered throughout the year in order to increase global awareness.

It’s exceptionally important that large and diverse universities, such as Florida State, are culturally involved since there are so many students attending at once. With all of these events and programs to consider, there is something for every student at FSU to take advantage of.

Florida State offers several international programs to students.

Florida State offers several international programs to students.

Diversity On Campus

December 26, 2014 in Alive Campus, Campus Life, Colleges

As I search for colleges to apply to, one important characteristic for the school was that it was diverse campus. Wheelock did a great job in having a diverse campus, although the ratio of females to males is unbalance. There are more females than males, but that was fine by me. I was surprise by the amount of diversity Wheelock has had over the three years and a half I have been there. What I really was impress by was the different school clubs at my college that people can join. There is the Best Buddies club, La Herencia Latina, Black Student Union, Asian & Asian-American Cultural Club (AAACC), Gay-Straight Alliance and many other groups that are about diversity and culture. 

Diversity on Campus

Diversity on Campus!

Best Buddies Club: This club is about a college student partnering up and becoming friends with a person with a intellectual disability. Through various activities such as dances, dinner, and bingo nights, students who join this club will develop a long lasting friendship with a person who might have a difficult time making friends due to people only looking at his or her disability instead of the person beyond it. I find this club wonderful because it is a life changing club where there is a bonding connecting between two people.

La Herencia Latina: This club has to be one of my favorite mostly due to the fact that I am a Latina and I love how this club is spreading the difference cultures within the Latino/a group. Also the different problems people within that group are going through. A lot of people may categorized all of the different cultures and diversity as a whole, but through this club, they individualized each culture and show why it is part of the Latino/a group. Through dances, food pantries, game nights, dance marathons, and much more, this group helps other students familiarized themselves with the difference cultures with the ethnicity Latino/a.

Black Student Union: This is another club that I like because it informs other students of the different cultures and problems people who are black face everyday. They also spread the cultures of black people through music, dances, food, and traditional games. Just like La Herencia Latina, this group also spreads the diversity and different cultures that are within the group.

Asian & Asian-American Cultural Club (AAACC): As the title implies, this club focuses on informing and spreading the the different cultures of Asian and Asian-Americans by organizing dances, food pantries, and game nights. This is a wonderful club to have because people will get to know about a difference culture than their own just like the others clubs at Wheelock.

Gay-Straight Alliance: This is an essential club that every college should have because a lot of people are still ignorant and treat being gay as evil and people who are gay go to hell due to religion. At the same time discriminate towards people who are gay.

There is bible study at Wheelock, but there is no club to study the different religions in the world, which I feel is important to understand the different thought process of people.

I do not regret attending Wheelock because they have a great diverse campus and clubs. 

Get to Know a New Culture at Boston University

August 1, 2014 in Alive Campus, Campus Life, Colleges

As soon as you step foot on the Boston University campus, you know you’re in the midst of a cultural melting pot as diverse as America itself. BU attracts students of all backgrounds and nationalities. International students make up a large percentage of the total student population, which represents nearly every continent. With roughly 16,000 students, BU is able to pull students from every walk of life. The diversity on campus is a large part of what makes BU so much fun to attend. There is always something new to learn from the various cultural events held on campus. Plus, everyone you meet comes from a unique culture–as a BU student, you are privileged to meet peers and professors from every background imaginable.

Thus, it should come as no surprise that BU is extremely culturally involved. Of the hundreds upon hundreds of student clubs and organizations, many are cultural clubs that celebrate or raise awareness of a certain nationality, religion, country, or culture. These clubs all have a similar goal–to promote, share, and educate others about their culture. But these groups are also active on campus and give back both to the school and the community. Fundraisers in the form of shows, concerts, and dances are common among these groups. They are an important part of BU, and they keep our school vibrant and diverse.

Some popular cultural groups on campus include:

Chinese Students Association

csa

The CSA is a the largest cultural group on campus. Their main goals are to create networks and friendships within the Chinese community at BU, and to recreate the culture of China on their Bostonian campus. The CSA hosts a lot of events throughout the school year and is extremely active on campus.

Association Francophone de Boston University

afbu

AFBU is a well known club for French language and culture. The club offers French tutoring sessions, language practice meet-ups for students to hang out and chat in French, among other events and activities. Members are devoted to welcoming French speaking students, and engaging in speaking the language and developing French speaking skills.

African Students Organization

aso

“Discussion, music, food, and dance” are what the ASO declares bring their group members together. Their mission is to promote African culture on the BU campus and to share their struggles and successes as a community with those who may not be familiar. The AFO is a huge group that welcomes members of all cultures and backgrounds.

Asian Student Union

asu

A big portion of BU’s international students hail from Asia, so the Asian Student Union is an incredibly large and popular group. The ASU is devoted to promoting Asian culture, as well as to giving back to the community by partnering with local non-profits. The group hosts performances, events, and even a popular winter formal dance.

 

The aforementioned clubs are just a taste of what BU has to offer culturally. For a complete list of all the cultural groups on campus, check out this page: http://www.bu.edu/studentactivities/group-category/cultural/.

 

A Diverse Campus

February 15, 2014 in Alive Campus, Campus Life, Colleges

As one of the largest public universities in New England, UConn’s main campus at Storrs is a diverse group of students. With around 18,000 undergrads at Storrs alone, it is far from a monochromatic group. There are a number of groups and organizations on campus that cater to different groups. Cultural centers, religious centers, and even the rainbow center all have strong foundations on campus.

Greek life is a good example of how diversity is handled on campus. What comes to mind for Greek life for most people are the typically college fraternities and sororities. Along with the typical aspects such as parties, houses, social and more. While these are all present, there is another aspect of Greek life that often goes unknown. The multicultural organizations in Greek life make their presence known. While they are typically smaller in size than the IFC or Panhellenic chapters, they are unique in their members devotion. Some IFC chapters, the fraternities that first come to mind for most people, have some members who are in it for parties and having fun alone. They could care less about the significance that comes with being in Greek life. With the multicultural groups its different. They have such an intense pride in their organizations, it’s really impressive to watch.

Some of the most influential groups on campus are the cultural centers. The cultural centers are the African-American Cultural Center, the Asian American Cultural Center, the Puerto Rican Latin American Cultural Center (PRLACC), the Rainbow Center and more. If you really want to see how impressive these groups are, just watch Homecoming every fall. There are different groups competing in Homecoming such as Greek Life, the Cultural Centers, and other student organizations. The cultural centers are in their own category thankfully, because they would blow everyone else out of the water. Where they really stand out is during the lipsync competition. This is a large choreographed song and dance routine that the whole school watches. It’s worth going to solely to watch the cultural centers. In short, they kill it, every single year.

There are different religious groups on campus too. Christian organizations, Muslim groups, Jewish, and even Pagan groups can be found on campus. Hillel is the Jewish community center on campus and is very involved in a number of campus activities. One in particular is Greek life. Hillel is very involved due to the high number of Jewish students in Greek life. The Jewish Greek organizations, AEPi, AEPhi, ZBT and more have a huge presence in Hillel. One way that the University treats all religious groups equally is that it holds classes on religious holidays. With the exceptions of the holidays that land on weekends or during breaks, there will be class regardless of faith.

Diversity is important for a campus of UConn’s size. The different cultural groups on campus help to create a more unique and expansive college experience. These groups are by no means exclusive either. Just because you’re a white guy doesn’t mean you can’t join the Asian American cultural fraternity. Which ever one fits you best.

Diversity!

Diversity!

Be the Change You Want to See in the World: Becker College

December 27, 2013 in Academics, Admissions, Alive Campus, Campus Life, Colleges, Love

“Be the change you want to see in the world.” -Mahatma Gandhi

To quote Mahatma Gandhi, “Be the change you want to see in the world.” When President Dr. Robert E. Johnson took office at Becker College, he shorted it to, “Be the change” and adopted it as the school’s new motto. Since his inauguration, the school has definitely become an ever cycling whirlwind of new ideas, new minds, and positive change. And channels to incentivize change have been instituted.

While I can’t speak for the Becker College before President Johnson’s era, nor can I speak about Becker College the one year he was President before I arrived, I can speak about the current Becker College. And currently, the student body has a severe need for change in their attitude.

Don’t get me wrong, I am completely biased. I live, breath, and think that Becker College is absolutely perfect in every way. I have been cited as saying that Becker College is the school of my dreams. And ultimately, it is the school that I have sacrificed my entire life in California for. It is the school I am willing to stay at for 4 years, that I traveled 3,000 miles to get to, and the school that I have fought with every fiber I have to stay at.

Any problem that ever exists is quickly changed through the appropriate channels. Most of the ‘problems’, however, are only cited as problems because students expect too much and don’t understand human-ness. Yes, the dining hall isn’t a 5-star restaurant. But because it isn’t a 5-star restaurant, doesn’t mean that the food is crap. When the wifi goes down, they’re quick to blame Becker, but also don’t remember that it’s registration night and there’s 500 other students trying to get on the same website at the same time within seconds of each other. When Game Design, Animal Studies, and Nursing students seem to be “getting everything”, there is also the lack of understanding the the school is recognized for Gaming, Animal Studies, and Nursing- so of course the administration is going to be pouring a lot of money into those. Yes, the residence halls are a little drafty and old, but, they’re restored Queen Anne homes and some are probably older than our great-grandparents (May House on the Leicester Campus was a stop on the Underground Railroad for instance).

We are challenged to constantly try and make things better and to change what exists. But where is the line of reason being drawn? I have often wondered if the push to “be the change” has made our students greedy and to expect things to be absolutely without flaw to their liking and complete specifications. Often they will cry, “But I’m paying 40,000 dollars to be here.” and don’t realize that most of our tuition goes to pay our professors who are some of the best in their fields and the world. Because Becker College is private, we rely a lot on our prestige to attract donors and famous alumni to afford things that the tuition of students doesn’t cover- like that new Campus Center built in 2011 and opened for Fall 2012. Simply, don’t complain about the shuttle system and two campus system; because it’s been here since before your application, and you can pick your classes and living arrangements to stay on one campus- if that is what you prefer.

Because of my position on the Student Government Association (SGA), I can speak that probably the number one wish of the SGA officers is that the students will come to us with their complaints, instead of going to social media, ranting about on it campus, and ultimately complaining for the sake of complaining. If they come to SGA, or an appropriate faculty matter, the school can change for the better more quickly, or we can address outlandish requests. The same goes for students who bottle up their complaints, and will later slander Becker when they leave.

I wish, not only as an SGA member, but as a fellow student, that my peers will open their eyes and understand how great Becker College actually is when it comes to taking in constructive criticism and implementing it for the better. I wish that my peers will understand how reasonable or not their requests are and to ultimately understand not everything is perfect. The school is run by humans, humans attend the school, and because humans have their hands in every aspect of the system, it is bound to have flaws. But, it is my belief, that the flaws that are present, are miniscule at worst, and do not detract from the overall experience. “Be the change you want to see in the world” Gandhi said, “Be the change” President Johnson reiterated. And while my advice isn’t Becker specific, I urge our community as millennials to learn humility, respect, reason, and understanding and not only will the campus become better, but, we will become better humans to contribute to the global society.