The African Student Union (ASU) will host the Afro Beat Meets Dancehall party on March 4, as a chance for students to represent their culture and their ancestors.
Adam Diabagate, vice president of the organization, explained how important flags are for foreign cultures, including African and Caribbean cultures.
“Each flag tells a story or something special and specific about each culture,” he said. This “Rep your flag” event is similar to the concept of Carnival, where individuals from various countries parade through streets with excitement, representing their ancestral countries.“It’s a pride thing,” Diabagate said.
“You can’t have Afro beats without dancehall, or dancehall without Afro beats. Caribbean people enjoy African music, and Africans enjoy dancehall,” explained Diabagate. At the end of the day, ASU’s goal is to create more exposure to the diversity of Stevenson.
Students who attend the event can expect to have an experience filled with music, dancing, dance floor battles and exposure to other cultures. There will be a variety of music, including R&B, Latina, rap and more.
Diabagate noted that anyone is welcome to attend the event, although the name ‘African Student Union’ can sound exclusive. The event is open to all students, and some of the club’s non-African members will be in attendance while happily ‘repping’ the American flag.
The more flags that are present, the more the diversity of Stevenson is shown, said Diabagate.
Those who are already familiar with African and Caribbean cultures will have the opportunity to reconnect with their background, as well as represent it. With much similarity between the two cultures, ASU believed that this would be the perfect event to bring them together.
Other African Student Unions in the area have had events similar to this, including Towson University, Morgan State University, University of Maryland College Park and many others. These schools have had ASU groups present on their campuses much longer, so they have a stronger presence, but Stevenson is happy to join the ASU family and intends on hosting many events in the future.
Tickets for the event are currently on sale for $4 at The Rock.