After the first full week of classes, several people attended International Karaoke Night this past Friday to sing their hearts out.
The event was organized by the Language Center, located in Douglass Commons. Run by professor Teresa Valdez, the Center works to promote the 18 languages offered on campus.
“It has been a very popular event among students on campus,” administrative assistant Carlotta Gambato said, prompting the Language Center to upgrade the event from once a semester last year to twice a semester this year.
According to the event organizers, International Karaoke Night was created to facilitate the learning of different languages on campus.
The evening began on a high note with several people volunteering to sing in foreign languages. Even for people who did not speak those languages, many students agreed it was eye-opening to be amid the diversity the different languages brought.
Students and staff covered an array of languages offered by the school, including junior Andrea Cruz-Bendezu, who sang in American Sign Language. Additional languages sang were Mandarin, Cantonese, Italian, Spanish, Hebrew, and Korean.
“The idea of the event was to encourage people to express themselves in their native language or any other language that they are learning on campus,” said sophomore Karina Vasquez, who also works in the Language Center.
Many attendees believed the emotions ingrained in these languages transcended cultural and linguistic boundaries. A few students pointed out the event highlighted the spirit of togetherness, which organizers had hoped to achieve.
The International Karaoke Night concluded by announcing winners, picked by audience voting.
The chosen winners of the night were junior Jenny Yau and senior Lial Ye.
“Karaoke, as a form of activity is not very common in all cultures, so it is very nice that the Language Center is doing these to promote diversity of languages,” Yau said.