First-ever Cultural Remix celebrates diverse communities, cultures
In a sea of electrified students, Michael Gonczar wobbled back and forth to the beat in the middle of Jenison Field House on Saturday evening.
The environmental studies and agriscience senior was one of many attendees at the first-ever Cultural Remix who participated in a line dance number at the event.
“It was a lot of fun,” Gonczar said. “It gave me a sense of community. It was awesome just smiling and dancing.”
Cultural Remix, which took place from 5-9 p.m. Saturday at Jenison Field House, is an event that aims to bring attention to the diversity of MSU’s student population.
“This was an opportunity to bring students together,” said Meaghan Kozar, a coordinator in the Office of Cultural and Academic Transitions, who also helped organize the event. “The main goal is to bring diverse communities together through music, art and the celebration of culture.”
The free event also acted as an opportunity for up-and-coming local artists to share their talents with the public. The event had a featured artist section with numerous booths displaying drawings, photographs and paintings.
“There’s a lot of talent on MSU’s campus and in the Lansing area, and we wanted to highlight it,” Kozar said. “Our feeling is that music and art and culture can really bring people together.”
Kozar said the event was meant to be similar to Spartan Remix, which is held at the beginning of every school year to celebrate the diversity of MSU’s students.
“We really wanted to have that same kind of energy at the end of the year,” she said. “It’s just a way to celebrate the end of the year as opposed to Spartan Remix, which is a celebration that kicks off the year.”
For Vanessa Servin, Saturday’s event provided members of her sorority, Delta Chi Lambda, an opportunity to promote the work they do on campus.
“Diversity is really important in terms of being here on campus,” the food industry management junior said. “There’s not a huge selection of diversity here so being able to come out to events like this and creating awareness that we are here (is important).”
Residential College in the Arts and Humanities and studio art sophomore Gretchen Mathos also used Saturday’s gathering as a way to gain exposure.
Mathos has been taking photographs since she was about 13 years old but said she never really has had the chance to showcase her work until Saturday.
“Lansing is a great art community, but I’ve never had a way to get in here,” she said. “When I found out there were going to be Lansing artists and MSU students, (I thought) that was going to be really cool to have all that art and music in the same spot.”
At first, Mathos said the thought of so many people seeing her work made her feel uneasy, but as the night went on, and she met more event attendees, she became more confident.
“It’s nerve-racking because you don’t know if people are going to like it or not, but I’ve gotten some good responses, so it’s been a good experience,” she said.
Gonczar said in addition to dancing with his friends, he enjoyed visiting the various booths that were present at the event, such as Mathos’, and learning about the student groups and activities on campus.
“It’s great being part of such a big community and being exposed to all the options and different ways to get involved with the MSU community,” he said.