Morning Sun
  • Students spread international flavor

  • The band sung and played, whipping their fans into a little frenzy.

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  • The band sung and played, whipping their fans into a little frenzy. The fans brought signs and gave feedback when the microphone was pointed their way. There was little from this scene at Pittsburg State’s Tastes and Sounds of Nations that could tell you the band was singing completely in Korean.
    The event is designed to promote the foods, dances, music and cultures of some of the international students at Pittsburg State.
    Chunsik Ohm, the drummer in the Korean band, said he only had one regret.
    “I wish everybody knew the songs,” Ohm said. “Not just the Koreans knowing our songs, but everybody. On the last song, everybody gave a good response to us. I was satisfied with it.”
    The Korean band was just one of several performances at the event.
    A group of Indian students performed a traditional dance, clothed in vivid-colored fabrics that sparkled and jingled as they moved.
    Several students from Taiwan teamed up to perform using a flute, piano and a disc jockey.
    Other performers included a Japanese band, a piano performance and a traditional “bottle dance” by Jazmin Ramirez, International Student Association president from Paraguay.
    “I think this night is very important because we are always trying to show our cultures,” Ramirez said. “We want the community to see our cultures. Everybody’s so excited. When we asked if people wanted to dance or people wanted to cook, people just pitched in and said yes.”
    The food is another key part of the event. Representatives of countries from India, Malaysia, Spain, Cyprus and others made foods from their countries.
    One of the food-offering countries stood out a little bit.
    “It is important for the United States to be here. We think it’s important to bridge the gap between the international students and the U.S.,” Allison Keegan said. “It’s not just international students here and Americans there.”
    Chuck Olcese, director of international programs and services, said the event is traditional because students ask for it.
    “It’s kind of a cornucopia of culture,” Olcese said. “It’s just a little taste from different countries. In fact, that’s probably what got me started in international work -- the food. This is something the students just love doing.”
    Andrew Nash can be reached at andrew.nash@morningsun.net or by calling 231-2600 ext. 132.

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