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Saint Mary’s celebrates diversity with Italian Dinner

| Friday, September 26, 2014

Saint Mary’s Student Diversity Board and Italian Club held the first annual Diversity Dinner, featuring three speakers and small-group discussions in Regina South Thursday.

Senior Catherine Sullivan, vice president of the Italian Club and hostess of the event, introduced the event. Sullivan’s parents were also in attendance, as guests who were born in Italy, and they shared their Italian cuisine with students.

photo 4 (2)Chelsey Fattal | The Observer
The keynote speaker, Saint Mary’s Italian professor Robert Morse, shared his experience as a professional European basketball player. Morse also discussed his favorite parts of Italian culture and cuisine.

“During my time in Italy, I loved being a part of a team and eating some of the best food in the world,” Morse said. “Many of my favorite experiences happened in Italy.”

Morse also said he was named one of the top 35 basketball players in Europe.

Sophomore Italian student Stephanie Bramer said she attended the event for great food but got much more.

“I would’ve never guessed I would also get my professor’s life story tonight too,” Bramer said. “I love Italian food and I love my professors. I had to come because it was the perfect mix.”

Senior Ana Martin, president of the Italian Club, who is originally from Mexico, said she hopes the event will continue and expose students to more diverse cultures.

“My hope is that this is only the beginning,” she said. “I want every culture that represents the Saint Mary’s community to be represented.”

Sullivan said she hoped the event provided an authentic experience.

“The Italian Club wanted to host the Diversity Dinner to inaugurate the club and to give an experience of the Italian culture,” she said. “We hope to offer an exquisite dinner, cooked by real Italians.”

Sara Bauer, a senior Italian minor said she attended the dinner to relive her Italian study abroad experience

“I spent a year in Rome and miss it every day, so I was excited for the opportunity to have some Italian food and reconnect with the girls tonight,” she said. “I think that Professor Morse is a wonderful and interesting person in general. I had to come for the good food and wonderful reminiscing.

“Each year we’re hoping to build, and I think it’s becoming stronger,” Sullivan said. “And it’s encouraging that our campus is really uplifting women’s diversity.”

The Chinese Cultural Club has already signed up to host the next Diversity Dinner.

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About Chelsey Fattal

Senior at the University of Notre Dame and Saint Mary's College. Major in Hydrology - Environmental Geosciences with a concentration in International Development. After studying abroad in Argentina for 6 months (spring 2015), I have also fulfilled a minor in Spanish.Writer for the Notre Dame and Saint Mary's Observer

Contact Chelsey