According to the Chinese calendar, each year marks a different animal, and this year is the year of the monkey. The Chinese Scholar and Student Association helped ISU celebrate with a Chinese Lunar New Year Celebration on Feb. 6 in Hulman Memorial Student Union.
CSSA members took the spotlight and welcomed other cultures with different activities, including a short video of different ethnicities saying “Happy New Year” in Chinese, as well in their own native language.
Most of the activities and performances that night focused on learning Chinese and sharing cultural differences. Some of the events included demonstrations of martial arts, traditional Chinese dancing and multiple music performances.
Several of the music performers, including Jack Yang, played piano at the event. “I’ve been playing piano for about 10 years, and to play in front of students, it’s quite a different experience,” said Yang, a sophomore business administration major.
Yang, who was also director of the Chinese Lunar New Year Celebration, played traditional Chinese music to synchronize the event’s atmosphere, while English translations were displayed to interact with the Terre Haute and ISU communities.
“This event gave us a big opening to show ISU our capabilities, both to entertain and also teach about Chinese culture,” said Yuanfan Zheng, former president of CSSA and a graduate student in geography. At the event, Zheng helped the association by selling merchandise, such as window stickers, bowls and tassels.
This was an event for everyone to bask in a cultural experience that was different from their own. “I was shocked to see ethnic groups come together and a whole lot of families represent one culture,” said DJ Reynolds, a sophomore psychology major.
The Chinese Lunar New Year Celebration is one of the largest and most popular held on campus for CSSA and the Center for Global Engagement. This year’s celebration sold out in just a few days and turned out to be a huge success for the community, including students, faculty and guests.