On Sunday, April 4, 2021, Washington Adventist University’s international students and staff presented a plethora of colorful performances of songs, poems, dances, food and recipes, music, rituals, and ceremonies from around the world. The title of the virtual event was Celebrating Our Cultures and Empowering Our Communities, which was organized by the Office of the International Student Program.
Dr. Beulah Manuel, Director for International Student Program, in her opening welcome and remarks, said: “We recognize that more than ever before, during a time like this, accepting and appreciating other people’s race, culture, and heritage, can help us all live in harmony and be united as a community. At Washington Adventist University, we are truly an international family.”
Washington Adventist University has over 100 students from 40 different countries around the world who enrich our campus with their unique cultures, background, and perspectives. Our international students are valued and respected members of our campus community.
The evening’s program began with “The Star-Spangled Banner,” which was played in tribute to this beautiful country where we live, study, and work. The theme song was “Love can Turn the World” by Gaither’s Vocal Band.
Mayor Kate Stewart of Takoma Park, MD, was our special guest, who delivered the inaugural speech via zoom to open the event.
The Vice-President for Student Life, Dr. Ralph Johnson, welcomed the audience on behalf of the campus learning community and congratulated the organizers and participants.
Dr. Reginald Garcon, our Registrar, facilitated the program as the emcee. He was funny, jovial, and kept the audience lively throughout the entire program.
The items that were presented by both students and staff were: Songs in Hindi, Cape Verdean, Spanish, poems in French & English, Arabic, Haitian; Ghanaian dance; Jamaican Steel Pan Music; Spoon-thumb band from Zimbabwe; marriages ceremonies from Nigeria and Saudi Arabia; food recipes from Panama & Malaysia.
Mr. John Boggs, Dean for The Betty Howard Center for Student Success, concluded the event with a prayer of blessing, which was also fitting to commemorate the Resurrection Weekend!
Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the relaxing evening! Thank you to all! We look forward to hosting the event annually!
Please enjoy Mayor Kate Stewart’s Inaugural speech.