Student-led culture festival leaves an impact on community

By Matisse Sanchez, Mar. 15, 2022

On March 10, ASI hosted Culture Fest with multiple booths to help students get involved with different organizations on campus. Located in front of the ASI building, tents were set up to help engage the student community and learn about the cultures represented on campus.

As they first opened, students were greeted with multiple tents all over the grass with various cultural organizations. ASI wanted students to get to know the community that is surrounding them and involve them to help empower one another through various group activities while including music and snacks.

With over 300 organizations, CPP offers a range of cultural representations or opportunities ASI wanted to give opportunities for students to engage with different culturally diverse groups on campus and have fun getting to know one another.

Marketing management student Emily Quinton said that it was beneficial for CPP to make events like this, which helped engage students and increase the demand for these types of events.

“I think that even within Cal Poly there is its own culture, and it’s kind of cool to see everyone else’s culture come together onto this one campus,” Quinton said.

Some of the student-led culture groups that were represented amongst the tents included a Chicanx and Latinx Hermanas Unidas based group. Having both hybrid and in-person meetings on Wednesdays, Hermanas Unidas are dedicated to helping women feel included in a group setting.

Psychology major and campus liaison Jessica Juarez explained how they offer academic, social and community service events for undergraduate and graduate students. This group of empowering women are not limited at all and are welcome to anyone that is trying to find a place to belong and be involved in.

Hoping to catch members, Hermanas Unidas are full of events which help serve the community around them, such as writing letters to cancer patients and much more.

Biology major Karen Rendon, coacher for the organization, explained the hope that people get when they join these groups. Embodying “el poder de la mujer,” which translates to the power of women, Rendon expressed that this was something their group stands up for and the power that women can have in this world.

“I hope that they find their home away from home,” Rendon said. “We’re striving to empower one another.”

Latinx representation wasn’t the only one that set up a tent; the Indian Student Association was more than welcoming and greeted students with various activities such as henna and rangoli.

Henna is a natural, semi-permanent dye that is added onto the hands in intricate designs such as flower, geometric and many more patterns. Rangoli is the art of creating flower shapes and various other patterns on the ground with colorful sand and other materials.

Biochemistry major Bhavisha Desai explained how some of these activities are traditions, such as rangoli, and they are an activity that Indian culture does to celebrate the new year. The Indian Student Association recognized the need for a club that helped incorporate Indian students of any background and religion into a club to join and get to know each other.

“I realized that Cal Poly is so diverse,” said Tanish Ramisetty, student activities assistant. “Culture is identity. Everyone has a different culture no matter where they’re from, it could be tradition, your family or country of origin.”

To find out more about different cultural organizations on campus, the CPP community can visit myBar.


Feature image by Matisse Sanchez

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