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Masala's Diversity Week Opens

Masala's Diversity Week Opens

Several multicultural groups set up tables at the event to promote their organizations and show support for Masala, the umbrella organization for cultural groups on campus.

Sarath Kolluru, an executive board member of Masala, said the goal of the week was to promote multiculturalism.

"It's important to spread the word that there are different cultures and inform people how to access them," he said.

Kolluru said he wants to make certain that people are aware of the numerous cultural groups UNC has to offer.

Other events planned for the week include a multicultural dinner Tuesday, a date auction Wednesday, a showing of "Anatomy of a Hate Crime -- The Matthew Shepherd Story" on Thursday and a Masala dance competition Friday.

Groups participating in the festivities include Mezmerhythm, a multi-genre dance team, the Arab Club, Sangam and the Carolina Caribbean Association. The groups in the Pit said they were hoping to support Masala and at the same time publicize their own organizations.

Anna Beth Upchurch, a sophomore member of Mezmerhythm, said it was important to introduce aspects of different cultures to students.

Upchurch said the dance team was also hoping to publicize their group and possibly attract some new members.

"We are a multi-genre group, so maybe we can get some new cultures represented," she said.

Hani Alkhaldi, co-president of the Arab Club, said his group was out to show its support for the organization. "Masala does an excellent job of providing a way to learn about other cultures," Alkhaldi said. "They help people interact with other cultures."

Alkhaldi said he hoped Monday's Pit sit would help publicize the club. "We just want people to know we exist," he said. "We have already added a few names to our list."

Sophomore Kondwani Williams, Web designer for the Carolina Caribbean Association, said his group hoped the week would broaden the horizons of some students. "We come to the University to learn, so that's what we're here to do -- promote learning," Williams said.

Tasha Hughes, the Masala representative for the CCA, said this week educates people about the world's different cultures. "Culture exists in the world we all live in, no matter how hard some people try to ignore it," Hughes said.

Students enjoying a free treat said they thought the week was a fun way to raise cultural awareness. "This a great way to get the names of cultural groups out in the open," senior Drew Youngblood said.

"Plus, everyone loves free food."

The University Editor can be reached at udesk@unc.edu.

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