Club Spotlight: Asian Cultural Club

John cabot university, study abroad in Rome, Chinese culture club, JCU clubs, Chinese students in RomeHello from the Asian Cultural Club! Upon embarking on a journey from the Chinese Culture Club to the Asian Cultural Club, our goals have extended to becoming more inclusive, appreciative, and educational, one small step at a time, as JCU’s campus community also becomes more international.

As one of Confucius’ sayings goes, “The man who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones.” From the often-overlooked cultural aspects that constitute the diverse Asian traditions and are embedded in its core values to the more explicit occurrences in our daily lives, the Asian Cultural Club constantly strives to encompass all the possible cultural spaces. Through our small but meaningful contributions, we hope to inspire the John Cabot University community to expand their knowledge of the Asian culture and traditions, and perhaps even open up future paths of learning and working.

We organize bi-weekly meetings, during which we offer a taste of the rich Asian tradition: topics of discussion have been the food culture, business etiquette, political diversification, and traditional games and activities. We also organize small and big events throughout the semester to come together and celebrate some of the most important festivities such as the Lunar New Year, Diwali, Holi, and Flores de Mayo.

In the spring, we usually celebrate Chinese New Year with performances by Chinese musicians, delicious food, and cultural workshops held by our board members. We have given lessons on how to draw beautiful characters with ink and brush, how to fold delicate origami, and how to taste and differentiate between Chinese teas. After the end of the last New Year celebration, we gathered outside of the University to make our wishes for the new year, then launched lanterns embodying our prayers from Piazza Trilussa. In addition to that we also discuss the relevant current issues in Asia such as the political tensions in the Korean Peninsula or upcoming elections in India, while celebrating and appreciating the rich and diverse music, language, and cuisine.

In addition, we collaborate with many of the other clubs and organizations at John Cabot University, participating in many events together. The Asian Cultural Club has worked with the Theater Society, the Literature Club, the Art History Society, the Grassroots Club, and the Multicultural Club during these years to acknowledge and appreciate the minute nuances the cultures have to offer. We are always eager for new ideas and constantly strive to continue collaborations with other clubs to make our JCU community more inclusive, involved, and informed.

As long as you bring your inquisitive and open-minded attitude, everyone is welcome to be a part of the club. The club is not about being Asian, but rather about shattering the superficial level of stereotypes that are associated with being Asian. Hence, we aim to encourage a more in-depth understanding of Asia in general by stimulating your curiosity about the Asian culture. Together, like Walt Disney said, “we keep moving forward, opening new doors and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.” The John Cabot University Asian Cultural Club is here to help you find the key for those doors: if, beyond those gates, you find a completely unexpected path and a newfound appreciation and interest toward Asia, then we’ll consider ours a job well done.

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