Lunar New Year is a crucial cultural celebration for many domestic and international students at Flinders University – and while it is traditionally a time to spend with families and friends, Flinders’ International Student Services and international student clubs created lively events for students of many cultures to share on campus.
Celebrations in the Hub at Bedford Park on Friday 12 February, which were launched by Vice-President and Pro Vice-Chancellor (International) Sebastian Raneskold, presented an opportunity for all Flinders students to learn more about Lunar New Year traditions, and celebrated a diverse spread of cultures represented at Flinders.
Flinders’ students Wenyue (Christine) SONG (Chinese student studying Master of Social Work) and Mr Rudraksh YADAGIRI (Indian student studying Master of Environmental Management) were the event’s MCs, and about 200 students who registered for the COVID-safe event were treated to a spectacular lion dance and drumming performance by Phap Hoa Lion Dance, a Papuan dance performance, a Chinese song performance by Rubayat Sarwar, Chinese traditional dance performance by Maniac Dance Club, a K Pop dance performance by Maniac Dance Club, and a traditional garment fashion parade with the theme of Unity in Diversity and Beauty of Diverse Cultures, coordinated by FLIPSA (Flinders University International Postgraduate Scholars Association).
Flinders University Student Clubs were also involved in event, with presentations of Chinese calligraphy by the Chinese Students & Scholars Association; Fortune telling by the Vietnamese Student Association; Arabic coffee, sweets and Arabic calligraphy by the Saudi Students Association; Traditional games and batik colouring-in with PPIA Flinders.
Students also coloured in Lunar New Year mural created by Adelaide artist, Elle Dawson Scott, which acknowledged the start of the Year of the Ox. Students who had registered also received a traditional red packet (a customary Lunar New Year gift for good luck and to ward off evil spirits) on arrival with free lunch voucher and free ice block voucher.