SILVIA OAKLAND, TRUMPET EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
International Club (I-Club) will host a COVID-19-safe Culture Week and Culture Show after the 2020 event was cancelled. The Culture Show and Culture Week will both be held in person following campus safety guidelines for COVID-19.
“Because we didn’t have one the past year, students are uncertain and saying ‘We don’t know if we are going to have one,’ but planning has been really great because we are able to think of new activities because of COVID,” Leticia Silva, I-Club president and third-year music and religion major, said. “These ways have opened a lot of opportunities here on campus, like working with other students.”
Culture Week will begin April 6 and go through April 10.
“I’m contacting each one of the departments to see how they can get involved. For example, in the science department, we are going to have an exhibition of botanicals and inventions from around the world,” Silva said. “In the Mensa, we are going to have international dishes every night. I think this will be a huge step to increase the embracement of diversity here on campus and be the opportunity to show who we are as international students, and what we do and where we come from.”
Culture Week at Wartburg has been held for the past decade, and has included various events allowing students to learn about the different cultures that make up campus. The 2019 event featured International Coffee and Tea Night, Craft and Henna Night, and Dances from Around the World Night.
“Cultural Show is not only for international students, therefore, attending [the event] allows you to be an ambassador of diversity and that will help for the future generation understand and accept diversity as well,” Shanta Nagarkoti, second-year business administration and accounting double major, said.
According to Edith Waldstein, vice president for enrollment management at Wartburg, 117 international students from 61 different countries are enrolled as Wartburg students for the 2020-21 academic year.
Nagarkoti said students will have the opportunity to learn more about other cultures outside of their own during Culture Week, even if they are international students. Nagarkoti also said she is excited to see, hear, taste and overall witness the different cultural activities from around the world. Since Nagarkoti is a second-year, she said she has never experienced a Culture Week or Culture Show before and is excited to see what this year’s event has in store even with the safety guidelines in place.
“I found that for performances, I think the biggest difference is that between different performances a clean-up needs to happen,” Silva said. “This might be more tiring for people and because of this we will not have as many performances as we would possibly have.”
I-Club hosted a number of events in the Fall Term and will continue to host a few more before Culture Week begins.
“We had our general member meetings as always, but we also had a panel and a bonfire. The panel was used to talk about issues back home, so we had international students talking about what has been going on back home.”
I-Club also promoted their Culture Week by posting posters with the phrase, “We are not your token” to promote diversity and the use of Black, Indigenous and People of Color in promotional photos or posters on campus. For more information on Culture Week 2021, visit I-Club’s Facebook page or contact Silva at firstname.lastname@example.org.