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Carnevale, a celebration of diversity

Northeastern’s International Student & Scholar Institute has kicked off Carnevale 2013, a two-month series of events designed to celebrate the university’s diversity through the promotion of intercultural awareness and exploration.

“It’s a great way for people to come together and learn from one another,” said Jude Albukhar, a second-year psychology major from Jordan and a member of this year’s Carnevale planning committee. “And by ‘people,’ we don’t just mean international students—we mean the entire university.”

Events began last Friday afternoon, with a festive celebration in the Curry Student Center’s indoor quad. The event gave students the opportunity to learn about upcoming events, sample foods from around the world, and mingle with peers representing a range of cultural and ethnic backgrounds. Northeastern students hail from more than 140 countries around the world.

Over the weekend, students carved ice sculptures on Krentzman Quad and celebrated the Lunar New Year, a festival that highlights elements of Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese cultures.

The Center for Spirituality, Dialogue, and Service will mark today’s start of World Interfaith Harmony Week with a 3 p.m. open house in the Sacred Space. It will also lead “Renew!,” Friday’s spirituality and leadership retreat to Harvard, Mass., for which advanced registration is required.

Throughout the month, ISSI is accepting submissions for “The World As I See It,” a photo contest giving students a chance to share how they see the world through their international experiences. ISSI is also sponsoring the Carnevale Pop-Up Art Show, which will display artwork created by members of the university community. A reception showcasing the winning submissions will be held in the ISSI’s Ell Hall suite on Wednesday, March 27.

A full listing of the month-long series of Carnevale events is available on ISSI’s website and in a downloadable PDF catalog,  Many of the events include music, dance, food, and art from cultures around the globe.

“I’m Indian, but the best thing about Carnevale is that I can go to all these events to learn about cultures that I don’t really know anything about,” said Namita Mainthia, a fourth-year pharmacy student. “This gives me an opportunity to learn much more—and everything is really fun, too.”