Catawba College Launches Successful Inaugural Day of Culture

Catawba College held their first Day of Culture on November 16th. This vibrant and immersive day was designed to celebrate the rich diversity and heritage of the College’s student body. It was a day dedicated to fostering cultural understanding, promoting inclusivity, and embracing global perspectives that contribute to the dynamic community at Catawba.

The inaugural program emphasized the College’s commitment to fostering cultural awareness and global citizenship among its student body and throughout campus. Students, faculty, and staff came together to celebrate diversity and inclusivity and reflect Catawba’s dedication to preparing students for success in an interconnected world. 

As part of the event, 32 students took part in Catawba’s new Passport to Success program, providing eligible students with the opportunity to obtain their first passports. Thanks to generous donors, this program helps students who have never had a passport receive one. An additional highlight of the day was the announcement that the Passport to Success program will return in 2024. 

One of Catawba’s first-generation students born in the US to Central American parents obtained their passports as part of the new program. This student will now have the opportunity to travel to their heritage home country and meet family members in person for the first time. Several other students, representing families who have never had passports and never traveled outside of the United States, are now the first in their families to have a passport. This achievement opens doors to new opportunities for these students, breaking barriers. 

“Our successful Day of Culture and Passport to Success program reaffirms our commitment to providing transformative opportunities for all of our students,” said Daniel Diaz, Director of the Glenn and Addie Ketner Center for International Studies at Catawba. “We are excited about the positive impact these initiatives have had, and we look forward to making our 2024 program even more impactful.” 

Other activities included speakers on the history of the Catawba Nation and the historical impact of colonization in the Carolinas, international and Catawba Nation food tasting, conflict management within the workplace discussion, first-generation student celebration, and two film viewings. The event spilled over into Friday with several speakers and wrapped up on Saturday with a trip to the Catawba Nation Yap Ye Iswa Festival. 

Catawba invites individuals and organizations to contribute to the Passport to Success Program by contacting the Development Office. A $175 donation covers the cost of one application, making it possible for more students to broaden their horizons through international travel. The program’s goal is to create a pathway for all eligible Catawba students to experience the enriching benefits of global exploration.

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