The University of Wollongong will celebrate its vast multicultural community at the largest, annual UOW Goes Global program in an effort to create cultural harmony on campus.
The two-week event aims to celebrate the ethnic diversity at the University of Wollongong (UOW) by featuring traditional food, music and dance.
This year, there is a significant increase in the number of UOW cultural clubs involved in the program, bringing together different backgrounds and communities to share their values and celebrations.
Oliver Batten, International Student Programs coordinator, said that the event will draw a much larger crowd with its greater variety of international workshops and festivals.
“This year’s program is certainly bigger than last years and we expect higher volumes of participation and engagement,” Mr Batten said.
Students will be able to participate in events that showcase the vibrant nationalities on campus, simultaneously bridging the gap that divides cultures through educating students about different traditions.
Mr Batten said that the event unites people of diverse backgrounds by giving them a platform to display their ethnicity to the wider UOW society, with internationally focused activities.
“It provides students and staff the opportunity to share their own cultures and knowledge with others whilst creating a vibrant and fun atmosphere on campus,” he said.
With 179 nationalities represented on campus, the event highlights UOW as a global university and encourages students to learn about the different cultures on campus.
The program will take students on a virtual tour around the world as different UOW cultural groups represent their nationality with scheduled performances such as belly dancing, Irish music, Japanese and Bangladeshi food stalls, the Festival of India, and the Carnival of Pakistan.
Farheen Ghauri, Social Secretary for the Pakistani Student Association, said that UOW Goes Global plays an important role in establishing a sense of belonging among people from multicultural backgrounds.
“Being in a diverse, multicultural platform, it is significant for people who are away from their own traditions and homes to get an occasion where they can meet people who share the same beliefs,” Mr Ghauri said.
The UOW Goes Global program has been running since 2013 and Mr Batten said that it is a great way to strengthen UOW’s sense of community.
“People get to learn from their peers, they get to share their own culture, they will make new friends, have a greater global perspective on the world and have a whole lot of fun whilst doing it,” Mr Batten said.
UOW Goes Global runs from October 10 to 23.