by MADIHA MIRZA
The international students at UMD came together to share their native food with fellow students and UMD community Nov.13 on the Taste of UMD at the Hope United Methodist Church.
Kouly Moua, the president of the UMD International Club, said that Taste of UMD brings in a lot of diversity in the neighborhood. "This is an event open to the community which means that college students and the community members are able to mingle together in one setting," Moua said.
Moua added that Taste of UMD is organized to share international cultures with the Duluth community. "We want the community to know about foods from around the world," Moua said. "We want the community to know about the cultures our international students are from and what we eat in different parts of the world."
The Taste of UMD is part of the nationally celebrated International Education Week, which runs from Nov. 13 to Nov. 21. The event is sponsored by the UMD International Club and UMD International Student Services. The event is free and open to the public and draws both American students and Duluth community who want to experience a variety of ethnic foods.
Last year, the event was attended by 400 people and almost all the food was finished in the first hour. Artur Spivacenco, treasurer of UMD International Club and an international student from Moldova, said that this year, only 200 people came to the event because of bad weather.
Spivacenco had prepared French style chicken and fried pepper with tomato sauce for the event.
"We had students from all over the world representing their countries and sharing their traditions and I'm very proud of our executive board who worked very hard to make it happen," Spivacenco said. "I hope we'll keep it up same way next year too."
The event took place from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. and featured about 40-50 different cuisines from around the globe. Some of the countries represented were China, Pakistan, Vietnam, Italy, Peru, India, South Korea, Brazil, Moldova, Portugal, Philippines and the United States.
Many international students wore their native clothes and had decorated their tables with flags of their countries.
Trisha O'Keefe, who works for the International Student Services, said that Taste of UMD offers people unique food from around the world. "People also get to experience other cultures by seeing international students in their native clothing," O'Keefe said.
Abigail Schoenecker, a Duluth resident, attended this event for the first time. Schoenecker said that it was great to see that everyone was open to trying everything. "I am really surprised by the different countries represented and impressed by the diversity it has brought in our community," Schoenecker said.