Students embrace diversity in weeklong event

The Southern Miss Activities Council (SMAC) and the Office for Multicultural Programs and Services presents Multicultural Week Monday through Saturday. There will be several events aimed at guiding students away from ethnocentrism. Activities will range from a discussion panel about stereotypes to a fundraiser Diversity Dash.

“The coolest thing about this week is that we are pairing with the Office of Multicultural Programs,” SMAC member Gemarco Peterson said. “We’re not just pairing with AASO like we usually do. We’re pairing with organizations that exemplify diversity such as Vietnamese Student Organization and some of the foreign language clubs.”

Monday’s event, Diving Into Diversity, will be an introduction of what the week is about and what these organizations hope to accomplish. In the Thad Cochran Center from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., students will learn what Multicultural Awareness Week 2014 is
all about.

The discussion panel “I am, but I am not…” will be held Tuesday, in Ballrooms I and II at 6 p.m. This discussion features Derek Greenfield and a panel of Southern Miss faculty, staff and students.

Laughter—A Universal Language will feature comedian Thomas Dale on Wednesday, in TCC Grand Ballroom at 7 p.m.
Thursday’s event will be in R.C. Cook Union Rooms A and B at 5 p.m. During Dancing With Diversity, students can dance and listen to music styles from around the world.

Many events will take place on Friday including, A Tour of Greece in the Fresh Food Company, Around the World learning about study abroad, and a viewing and discussion of the film “Slavery by Another Name” at 6 p.m. in Union Room B.

“Students will get the opportunity to come out and embrace the various cultures and background this school’s campus has to offer,” said Hannah Alexander, SMAC event productions coordinator.

The week will come to a close at Saturday’s Diversity Dash 5K Fun Run. This event is sponsored by the Student Association for Social Workers. Race registration starts at 7 a.m. at Pride Field. Cost is $10. The race will begin at 8 a.m.

The Office of Multicultural Programs and Services promotes the holistic development of multicultural students through leadership development, educational programming and collaboration with university departments. The office strives to increase recruitment and retention of multicultural students by creating a strong sense of campus community and assisting students in becoming successful graduates.

More information about Multicultural Week can be found at http://www.usm.edu/student-activities/multicultural-awareness-week-2014

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