Diversity Day is Back

The annual Diversity Club-sponsored event makes a return


Diversity Day was held outside in the courtyard this year.

On Monday, May 23, Diversity Day made a comeback after being put on hold for two years. Diversity Day typically takes place in the South Gym, but this year the booths were set up in the courtyard due to COVID-19 restrictions instituted earlier in the year. 

Diversity Day, which is run by the Diversity Club, is a day devoted to exposing students to new cultures through tasting foods from different countries and watching performances put on by their classmates. Participating students choose a country to represent and then create a display about the country’s culture, encouraging students to learn about each others’ heritages.

In addition to the booths, Diversity Day featured three main performances in the South Gym: a Chinese Yo-yo demonstration; a rendition of the song “Dos Oruguitas” from the movie Encanto; and the annual Tae Kwon Do performance. 

Diversity Club officers were excited to bring back the event to the school community now that many COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted. For Co-president Hanif Mouehla, last year’s virtual fair was “not nearly as special as the festivities that took place in 2020 [before COVID].” This year, Mouehla said, “I was so excited to finally get Diversity Day in full force again.” 

Diversity Club advisor Hollie Fox also expressed her excitement for students who have never experienced Diversity Day before. “I really hope students take away from this just how diverse our student body population is,” said Fox. “I hope they learn a thing or two about a different culture.” 

Senior Daniela Stemberga, who helped run the Ukraine booth, said, “It’s really exciting getting to talk to all the classmen, particularly underclassmen who haven’t experienced Diversity Day before.” 

Even though Stemberga did not run a booth from her own culture, it gave her the opportunity to learn about her friend’s cultural background. “It’s really interesting getting to know [my friend’s] culture really well along with him, [and] I feel like I’m learning just as much as I’m teaching people who come to our booth,” Stemberga said.

Along with watching the performances and trying new foods, Diversity Day fosters a more inclusive school community as it educates students about one another. “The essence of being in that environment with so many different cultures is an experience that is worth remembering,” Mouehla said. “This just exemplifies how Diversity Day can really change somebody, as it changed me.”

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  • Diversity Day was held outside in the courtyard this year.

  • “My mom is Puerto Rican and I thought making this booth for Diversity Day was a great opportunity to learn more about my culture.” – sophomore Abigail Dennis, pictured with sophomore Evan Brooks

  • “Over here we have pampushky, which is Ukrainian garlic bread. We have blintzes with mushroom and chicken and then we have apple pie bites and we also have a funky drink from Ukraine that tastes similar to beer… I was adopted from Ukraine and thought it would be nice to bring the culture into our school.” – senior Joseph Ortelere, with senior Taylor Schembri and junior Dmytro Kolisnyk

  • Freshman Nicole Silva and Lavinia Di Angelo and junior Ryan Wang host the Brazil Booth.

  • “I grew up Italian and food has always been a big part of growing up Italian and eating desserts… The food we have here includes three kinds of Panetone: chocolate, fruit, and plain. Then we have biscotti & sfogliatella, which has lemon cream inside, and lastly, Italian cookies.” – junior Sophia Wagner, pictured with juniors Mae Dolan and Mackenzie Ward

  • Diversity Club Advisor Hollie Fox poses with Diversity Club officers Hanif Mouehla, Jennifer Kim, and Sarah Valencia.

  • “I think when people look at Chinese, they get really intimidated by the complicated characters, so teaching them how to write it is really fun.” – senior Emma Ho, Chinese Club Treasurer

  • Brooke Drucker and Sofia Ferraro sit at their Israel booth with challah bread, Israeli flags, and traditional candies.

  • “My mom is from Nigeria and my dad is from Cameroon, so I’m half-Nigerian, half-Cameroon but I embrace more of my Nigerian side. Some of the food we have is puff puff which are just fried dough balls and these ran out really quickly. My mom made the cous cous and my sister made the puff puff.” – junior Hanif Mouehla

  • “I’m Cuban and I just wanted to show everybody about Cuban culture, so I put a few pictures of my family and I put food out for people to try.” – junior Gabrielle Garcia, pictured with juniors Jackie Carlos and Eric Szymczak

  • The Egypt booth featured baklava, a pastry filled with pistachios and cream.

  • “I am Swedish, and I love Sweden—the first place that my parents ever took me to was Ikea. We’ve got lingonberry which is super good, it’s like a jam, and salty licorice for people who like licorice… We’ve got Swedish ginger cookies, they’re really good. There’s Swedish fish obviously, and Daim which is Swedish toffee.” – senior Caitlin Carpenter

  • The Sweden booth displays famous Swedes, Swedish foods, and fun facts about the country.

  • “We decided to [run the DR booth] because Isabella is Dominican, and a lot of the photos on here are from her trip to the Dominican Republic. We have lots of snacks that are made in the Dominican Republic—we have cookies, we have plantain chips, we have mints, we have crackers. My favorite thing about Diversity Day has been talking to people who come to the booth and ask questions. We had a lot of Dominicans come up to us.” – junior Ally Manteiga, pictured with junior Isabella Alvarez

  • Junior Ashley Cho stands by the South Korea booth.

  • “We are Korean and we are really passionate about our ethnicity, [so] we wanted to share our favorite cultural foods that we eat at home. Some of them include Kimbap, which is Korean Sushi; Mandu, which [are] like dumplings; and some traditional Korean candies, such as Hichews, Choco pies, and Pocky.” – junior Connie Yeo

  • Senior Sam Yi poses in front of the South Korea stand in his Gi.

  • “I chose Spain because my family history is based in Spain and there even is a town in Spain named after me called Caunedo.” – senior Max Caunedo, pictured with junior Isabella Rueda

  • Senior Alexa Farah and Junior Seho Lee play live music in the courtyard.

  • “We’re just showcasing a lot of the snacks, pop culture, and also some of the traditional things about Japan. So, Sachi is wearing a yukata, and I’m wearing what’s called a happi. We’re representing Japan and it’s really fun.” – senior Rachel Tang, Japan Club President

  • “Sakuras are one of the prettiest, most beautiful flowers and represent new beginnings and fresh starts.” – junior Sachi Ikuma

  • Visitors to the Japan booth were able to play traditional Japanese games to win prizes.

  • “Norway is where my mother is from and I take great pride in representing such a beautiful country…I am a proud Norwegian viking and could not wait to express that part of me today for the whole school.” – junior Eddie Sullivan, pictured with juniors Marcello DeLillo, Andrew Park, and Drew Rosenblum

  • The Canada booth features information and treats from the country.

  • “We have [Indian] food—we have Savory Parra and we have Fryums. We have traditional Indian clothing, just like our posters, art from India and things like that.” – junior Maya Soares, pictured with juniors Sam Zhao and Angela Kim

  • Juniors Karch Wohner and Josh Lim represent Hungary at Diversity Day.

  • “There are spring rolls from Vietnam, there are shitake mushrooms, carrots, there’s a vegetarian option as well as a shrimp option. The real reason we did spring rolls was because I thought it was the most accessible food from Vietnam and it’s also one of the snack foods that they have. I’m really happy that we did spring rolls for diversity day.” – junior Kaitlyn Fung

  • Sophomore Andrew Kim mans the Germany booth.

  • Hanif Mouehla, Diversity Club Co-President, introduces Diversity Day performers.

  • Senior Sarah Valencia performs the song “Dos Oruguitas” from the movie Encanto.

  • Junior Sam Zhao uses a traditional Chinese Yoyo.

  • “My favorite part of diversity day is definitely the performance that South Korea does. I enjoy performing in it and it represents parts of our culture really well.” – senior Sam Yi, about the tae kwon do performance

  • Junior Jun Sim jumps over seven students to break a board during the South Korean tae kwon do presentation.

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