International Students Association Extravaganza to celebrate all cultures on campus

ISA+Extravaganza+will+run+from+April+18+to+April+23%2C+featuring+events+that+range+from+a+fashion+show+to+a+soccer+game.+%28Photo+courtesy+of+Yazdan+Basir+23%29

ISA Extravaganza will run from April 18 to April 23, featuring events that range from a fashion show to a soccer game. (Photo courtesy of Yazdan Basir ’23)

Next week, students will get a taste, sight and feel of the diverse array of cultures on campus.

From April 18 to 23, members of the Lafayette community will have the opportunity to celebrate a multitude of cultures with the International Students Association (ISA) Extravaganza week.

ISA President Celeste Fieberg ’22 and Vice President Yazdan Basir ’23 explained that the organization’s biggest hope for Extravaganza is for students to appreciate the diversity of cultures on campus. 

“How often will you be able to try Polish pork sausages [and] Jamaican curry chicken in the same space?” Basir said. “You can engage with different cultures and learn through the members of ISA, who are putting so much effort in every way they are participating this week.”

The week will kick off on April 18 with a fashion show in the Marlo Room. This will be an opportunity for students to show off their culture through clothes. Participating students will have a chance to answer questions and explain the significance of the clothing they chose to wear pertaining to their culture.

On April 19, there will be a celebration of the South Asian New Year, Avurudhu. Here, students will be able to find games, cultural traditions and sweets in the Marlo Room.

The next day, on April 20, there will be a study abroad photo contest in the Grossman Library where students can submit their photos for a chance to have them displayed in the library. On the same day, there will also be a Senegalese drumming presentation in the Portlock Black Cultural Center.

Fieberg and Basir went to Senegal this past winter interim and wanted to bring a piece of their experience to the rest of the Lafayette community. 

“We got to see a local traditional drumming performance in a fishing village, so we reached out to a few people and were able to invite a family to come and do a similar performance for the Lafayette community,” Basir said. “We want to show [Lafayette students] a similar cultural experience we shared and show the community how West African artistic culture could be expressed through something like drumming.”

On April 21, there will be a soccer world cup in the Kamine gym. Students who sign up for this event will be divided into teams inspired by regions of the world.

Through the next event, a food tasting on April 22 in the Marlo Room, students will have a chance to taste a variety of different cultural foods from Sri Lanka, Ethiopia, Mexico, Poland and many more countries. 

The week will come to an end on April 23 in Colton Chapel with the appropriately titled Grand Finale. Students will be invited to dance, sing and showcase instrumental performances and short films pertaining to their culture. 

Fieburg and Basir hope to make a long-lasting impact on the Lafayette community with ISA Extravaganza. They believe that this week will be another way to become more engaged with the international community on campus, as well as celebrate everyone’s cultural backgrounds. 

“ISA is open to everyone on campus. Not a lot of people realize that, but we really welcome everyone at our general body meetings or at the plenty of events we do throughout the year,” Fieberg said. “Doing these larger events allows us to have a broader impact on campus [and] also brings more people into the ISA family.”