“We are changing…. Grambling State University,” said interim President Dr. Frank G. Pogue to an attentive and diverse audience at the fifth annual International Food and Culture Celebration in the Black & Gold room Monday evening. “Since most American students will not be afforded the opportunity to travel to the countries represented here tonight and vice versa, we’ve brought that atmosphere here to Grambling State,” he said.
Students, faculty, and guests united for a night of entertainment, enlightenment, and dinner.
Vice President for International Affairs Dr. Mahmoud Lamadanie served as a coordinator of the event and presented the occasion with an opening of the night’s presentations.
“Having students from across the world right here in Grambling we are creating global classroom concept,” said Lamadanie.
“Our international pupils’ GPAs are up to par with the highest in the country . Five years ago we began with thirty students, and after this year’s fall commencement that number is an estimated 440. And with events such as this we bring the globe to us!”
Rev. Connie Breaux of Campus Ministries led an interfaith prayer, along with a moment of silence for brethren in Haiti. Nola Rene followed the moment of silence with a vocal rendition of “Victory is Sure.”
Anitra McGowan served as mistress of ceremonies and controlled the dinner traffic with vitality and grace.
Smiles and chatter filled the room as people conversed about the dishes, which included curried chicken and cauliflower, Caribbean black beans, French bread with hummus, Tabbouleh, African style spinach and Nepalese Dahl. The curried chicken was the night’s favorite dish.
Lovely music was provided by the ensemble of Tramall Love, Evan Washington, Thomas Wheeler and Keron Thorne, a student from Trinidad.
Thorne thanked Grambling State University for the opportunity to show the diversity of talent on the campus. “It’s more music on campus than just hip-hop,” said Thorne.
After dining, students from St. Lucia, Cameroon, Rwanda and Nepal showcased the traditional garments of their respective countries. Many international students donned their native garb throughout the course of the evening.
Manisha Budhathok performed a popular Nepalese dance and kept pace with the music, despite technical difficulties with the sound system.
A variety of talent was displayed as students Nora Ngafeeson, Fabrice Tchouba, David Muganza performed a comedic/dramatic sketch about a young man’s journey from Africa to Grambling State University. Laughter engulfed the audience as the sketch touched on the rudeness of some financial aid workers.
While all performances were exceptional, students from Antigua stole the show with a collective medley of songs and sketches.
The highlight of the segment being a song/story of a young man attempting to court a young lady by expressing his like for her; the actors/singers rose to occasion and received hearty applause.
McGowan thanked attendees and expressed the importance of the evening. The crowd “Edu-Tained” to say the least.
“Events like these gives us as African American students a chance to broaden our horizons,” said Miss Grambling State University Ahvery Thomas.
In the Feb. 4 issue of The Gramblinite, it was reported that Rev. Connie Breaux led an interfaith prayer, along with a moment of silence for Haitian victims. Elizabeth Davis of the international affairs office led the moment of silence. The Gramblinite deeply regrets the error.