The timing could not have been better for many of the students at California Western’s annual Multicultural Holiday Reception on December 5.
“Before finals, everyone needs a break,” said 3L Adam Grant over a plateful of delicious foods from all over the world.
“It’s a wonderful event, bringing together lots of great traditions, great food, and it’s a wonderful study break,” said 2L Sabira Abdulhameed.
The lobby of the classroom building was filled with people, food, and tempting aromas. Each of the food tables represented at least one cultural holiday, including Kwanzaa, Christmas, Hanukkah, Norooz, Eid, Diwali, the Lunar New Year, and Las Posadas.
“It showcases lots of different cultures from around the world and, of course, the cuisines that go along with those cultures,” said 3L Casey Lowe. “Of all the events California Western puts on, this is my absolute favorite.”
Among the ethnic dishes were potato latkes for Hanukkah, Indian curry for Diwali, tamales for Las Posadas, halaal chicken kebabs and hummus for Norooz and Eid, macaroni and cheese with cornbread and collard greens for Kwanzaa, and so much more.
“It brings the whole community together – the students, the staff, the faculty,” said library staff member Ian Kipnes. “Everyone shows up, fills up, and has a great time.”
“The wonderful thing about this is because we have such a multicultural student population, everybody recognizes the food and everybody’s talking to each other about the food that they recognize,” said Diversity Services Director Marion Cloete of the Student and Diversity Services office, which organized and hosted the event.
An important way people become culturally connected is through their taste buds, and everyone seemed to walk away from the event feeling happy and grateful—but not hungry.
As 3L Amalee Elayyan summed it up, “food and gratitude is a great day.”