Through this annual event, HPU students can recognize
countries and cultures around the world. Its like a
global village on Fort Street Mall, said Evelyn Ma,
activity manager of the Taiwanese Student Association.
Students and faculty were entertained and educated through
exhibits, photos, brochures, folk costumes, and antiques,
all displayed on the tables of each countrys booth.
Thailands booth, for example, was a mini showcase of
its cultural heritage, with Buddhas statue, traditional
kitchenware, accessories, and musical instruments.
We borrowed all the stuff from the Thai Cultural Center
in Hawaii, said Maleerat Praisa-ngob, a member
of the Thai Student Association. Displaying the real
objects is the best way to tell people what our culture is
Booths for participating students, representing their various
countries, were established on the upper Fort Street Mall,
and the stage was decorated with national flags from every
country represented at HPU.
The event started with the parade. Putting on their traditional
costumes and holding national flags in their hands, representative
students from different participating nations marched down
Fort Street Mall, to Merchant Street, back up Bishop Street,
to South Beretania, and back to Fort Street Mall.
Intercultural Day is a significant event for everyone,
said Marilyn Moreaux, an MBA student from Nigeria. For
me, it is a good way to learn about other cultures, which
we may not learn in the classrooms.
Intercultural Day reached its climax in the stage productions,
where the best performance won a $200 first prize. The Korean
Student Association played traditional Korean instruments,
the Swedish Student Association sang a Swedish folk song,
and the United Samoan Association Club performed a traditional
Among the diverse performances, the Japanese Student Associations
comedy-style performance won lots of applause from the audience.
There are four competition categories: the exhibit, parade,
stage performance, and overall. Thailand won the $100 for
best exhibit; Japan won $100 for best in the parade; Korea
won $200 for their stage performance; and United Samoa won
$300 for best overall performance.
In conjunction with International Student Services, Council
of Countries arranged and managed the whole event. Besides
the exhibits on the Mall, parade, and stage performances,
the council created a trivia test to enlarge students
excitement and interest. The trivia questions were generated
by each club or by the council, according to Liana Hall, general
chair of Council of Country Committee.
Students can find out the answers by visiting each
booth and asking for hints, said Hall. The person who
answers the most questions correctly wins.
Michael Dorsey answered the most questions correctly and
received $150 prize package.
Intercultural Day is an opportunity for all students
and the community to experience and learn from the cultural
diversity that prevails at Hawaii Pacific University,
said Ann Newton, director of International Student Services.
The 26 participants included Africa, Armenia, Austria, Botswana,
Cambodia, Cape Verde, Greece, French Polynesia, Germany, Hawaii,
Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Mariana Islands, Nepal, Nigeria,
Norway, Thailand, Philippines, Russia, the United Samoa, Singapore,
Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, and China.
Overall, Hall said, the event is great. The committee
would like to do more to improve Intercultural Day because
it is such an important event for every HPU student.