The Chinese Waist Drum Dance Group from the Ann Hua Chinese School performs. Photo by Lynn Monson

The Chinese Waist Drum Dance Group from the Ann Hua Chinese School performs. Photo by Lynn Monson

Celebrating diversity through food, song, dance

You didn’t have to take a cruise or book a tour to sample the best of what diverse cultures offer. Diversity was front and center recently at Washtenaw Community College’s “Diversity  Extravaganza,” held at the college’s Towsley Auditorium in the Morris Lawrence building.

“Diversity Extravaganza is an event to show off the diversity we have at WCC and in the community, while also engaging students, faculty and staff in events outside the classroom,” said Arnett Chisholm, Dean of the Office of Student Diversity and Inclusion. “This event is also an excellent opportunity for the community and future students to feel welcomed and appreciated.”

An array of ethnic food from area restaurants greeted visitors ahead of the performances. Participating restaurants included Ahmos (Mediterranean); Frita Batidos (Cuban); Pilar’s Tamales
(Latin American); Paesano’s (Italian); Casablanca (Mediterranean); Palm Palace (Mediterranean); Tower Inn (Greek); and Metzger’s (German).

The show represented a wide repertoire of music and dance genres, including the Ann Hua Chinese Dance Group’s performance of “Arirang.” WCC students also took the stage for a salsa dance, among the many other performances. There were a total of 16 acts and 44 performers and participants.

“I do believe everyone enjoyed themselves,” Chisholm said. “We tried to have something there for everyone. You could sit and listen to music, learn to line dance or just enjoy the variety
of ethnic food.” Chisholm said another Diversity Extravaganza is planned for next fall.

Singer and WCC student Christina Wallag representing Poland. Photo by Lynn Monson

Singer and WCC student Christina Wallag representing Poland. Photo by Lynn Monson

WCC student Maha Javed representing Pakistan in the fashion show. Photo by Lynn Monson

WCC student Maha Javed representing Pakistan in the fashion show. Photo by Lynn Monson