Monday, Aug 19, 2019

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Multicultural Student Expo continues to flourish in second year

The second annual Multicultural Expo was held on Aug. 27 in the Baker University Center Ballroom. Hosted by the Black Student Union and the Office for Diversity and Inclusion, the Expo brought nearly 800 students and more than 40 organizations together.

The theme for the evening was “Nyanspo,” meaning the wisdom knot. “Nyanspo” originates from the Twi language, which is spoken by a section of people in the West African Country of Ghana.

Winsome Chunnu-Brayda, strategic director for diversity and inclusion and multicultural programs and initiatives, said upperclassman have viewed the event as a passing of the torch to the underclassman.

“A lot of student groups, the majority of their members are juniors and seniors and they’re about to graduate,” said Chunnu-Brayda. “They’re giving back to the incoming class telling them, 'here are some things that we did that made us successful and here are some things you should avoid.'”

Freshman Mateo Dillard said the Expo allowed him to become knowledgeable of the organizations on campus in a fun setting and helped set the tone for the year.

“I think the turnout went really well. It looked like everyone from LINKS was here – all of my friends came,” Dillard said. “I learned a lot more about the multicultural organizations and I signed up for a few. I’m looking forward to getting involved.”

As a corporate sponsor, the Athens Wal-Mart donated gift cards to several first-year students and spoke with students interested in professional and hourly employment opportunities. In addition to the gift card raffle, students were able to enjoy food while several groups provided the entertainment, including F.A.C.E.S Modeling, Anointed Ministries, ABCD dancers and several Greek organizations.

President of the Ohio University Black Student Union Morgan Peterson said the Expo took a lot of preparation and provided a necessary change of pace for multicultural students.

“I think it was nice to have a concentrated Multicultural Expo just because [at the involvement fair] there is a lot going on,” said Peterson. “In this setting, I think it’s easier for students to see what there is to offer for minorities at Ohio University.”

The Expo was sponsored by the Multicultural Center and the Office for Diversity and Inclusion. There are several other upcoming events this semester, including Black Student Union week and the Native American and Hispanic Heritage months.

For the latest and most up to date information you can visit the Multicultural Programs website or follow them on social media @OUMulticultural.