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Diversity Dinner spotlights Chinese culture

| Monday, November 17, 2014

Student Diversity Board and Chinese Cultural Club held its second Diversity Dinner for over 50 people in Regina South on Friday evening in an event that focused on cultural diversity and featured three speakers and small-group discussions.

Senior Catherine Sullivan, international co-chair of student government, started off the night by welcoming everyone to the second Saint Mary’s diversity dinner, this time hosted by the Chinese Cultural Club.

Lanzhen Li, one of Saint Mary’s visiting Fulbright Scholars, gave a cultural presentation on the importance of food in China.

“The Chinese eat everything with four legs besides a table, and anything with wings besides a plane,” Li said. “There is a Chinese saying that says ‘food is heaven.’”

Senior Nicole Weaver said she also appreciates the Chinese food, both for its cultural significance and taste.

“I came tonight because I thought it was a great opportunity to try Chinese food,” Weaver said. “Also, Chinese food is like heaven to me.”

Junior Veronica McDowell, the secretary of the Chinese Cultural Club, introduced the evening’s meal, which was a collaborative effort.

“Half of the Chinese cuisine was cooked by members of the club, while the other half was donated by the Ho Ping House in South Bend,” she said.

Sophomore Yaqi Song, co-president of the Chinese Cultural Club, said, “To have this dinner was a great opportunity to give students the ability to learn outside of their classes.

“I think that this chance was a delicious and fun one. Eating this food reminds me of being home, which is in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China,” she said.

The assistant director of global education, Alice Yang, said the dinner could also lead to a deeper engagement with Chinese culture.

“Chinese classes are offered to us on Saint Mary’s campus, so it is important to take advantage of learning more about other countries, like China,” Yang said.

Sullivan said, “I was so impressed with these [diversity] dinners so far. People have been responding so positively and I feel as though the community is coming together in a new way through these dinners.”

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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

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