On Feb. 27, Belmont students held the third annual World Culture Fest in the Beaman Student Life Center to celebrate diversity on campus through dance, music, fashion and more. Individual students and student organizations focused on cultural identities had booths representing different world cultures for students to sample food, learn interesting facts, ask questions and participate in cultural activities such as henna tattoo art and calligraphy. The Rumi Club, Chinese Cultural Club and Black Student Association co-sponsored the festival in partnership with the Student Government Association.
Among the performances were Bollywood, Haitian and K-pop dance performances as well as musical performances of Scottish fiddling, hip hop and karaoke in nine languages. The booths represented cultures from South Korea, Laos, Egypt, India, Japan, Africa, China and Haiti.
The purpose of Culture Fest is to bring together students from all backgrounds to celebrate cultural art expressions from around the world. Some students and faculty were representing their own culture, while others were engaging in and representing a culture they were not familiar with prior to the event. Faculty sponsor for the event, Assistant Professor Dr. Amy Crook, said, “The support that students show to each other at the event during performances and at the booths is really amazing. People are asking for the recipes for exotic foods they’re having for the first time, falling in love with new musical genres and sharing experiences from their study abroad trips. It’s so encouraging to see the students put on such a quality event that really brings the community together.”
Belmont University’s College of Theology and Christian Ministry is hosting the second annual Faith and Culture Symposium this week with various speakers concentrating on the idea, “Worship and the Life of the University,” including keynote speaker Enuma Okoro. All events are free and open to the public to attend.
Associate Professor of Theology Dr. Steve Guthrie said, “This year’s event was inspired by the new chapel space that opened on Belmont’s campus in the Wedgewood Academic Center. Christian worship, of course, is an activity undertaken by Christian communities. Having a chapel on campus, however, encourages us to think about the relationship between worship and the wider culture in which Christian communities are located.”
Belmont University invites alumni, friends and family to attend Homecoming 2015 Feb. 26-28 for a variety of special events. The celebration, centered on the theme “Destination Belmont,” will feature the first Bruin Spirit Walk, two basketball games, a campus-wide canned food drive supporting Second Harvest Food Bank, a homecoming concert and a pep rally and bonfire. For a complete list of all Belmont Homecoming 2015 events and an opportunity to register, click here.
Julie Thomas, associate director of Alumni Relations, said, “Homecoming at Belmont University continues to grow into a true celebration of university life, and Homecoming 2015 is no exception. We view our alumni as part of our extended family, and we hope they will come home to experience the music, art, sports and friendships reminiscent of their time at Belmont. To quote the author John Ed Pearce, ‘Home is a place you grow up wanting to leave and grow old wanting to get back to.’ It’s time to come home and fall in love with Belmont all over again.” (more…)
With a mission to promote and celebrate cultural awareness on Belmont’s campus, the University’s Black Student Association (BSA) has announced a series of campus-wide events to celebrate Black History Month. This year’s theme is Renewal: Roots, Renaissance, Rights and the week’s festivities are planned as a way to explore and celebrate all aspects of black culture.
On Friday, Feb. 6, BSA kicked off February’s schedule of events with Roots: Celebration of Africa, an event that featured a Sankofa Drum and Dance Ensemble, as well as a fashion show honoring African kings and queens.
President of Belmont’s BSA chapter Briana August said the celebration of Black History Month is very important to the cultural enrichment of the University. “BSA has planned events that will educate, inspire and challenge the Belmont community,” August said. “While we wholeheartedly believe that black history is very much American history and should be celebrated every day, we are excited to spend the month of February exploring the several different and fascinating facets of black culture and history. If at each event, at least one person learns something new or finds themselves outside of their comfort zone, I believe we have done our job.”
W. Brett Wilson shared his story of success with students, faculty and staff on Wednesday afternoon, but his presentation included an unlikely twist. Wilson focused less on his achievements, including his billionaire status, ownership of the Nashville Predators or the profitable business he started from his genuine spirit of entrepreneurship, and more on his mistakes and realizations of what is important.
Wilson walked the audience through his book, Redefining Success: Still Making Mistakes, which was available for purchase and signing. Wilson explained his journey from engineering school, to a career in the Canadian oil industry, to earning his MBA, to starting an investment banking business which landed him a spot as a judge on the TV show “Dragons’ Den.” But through all this, Wilson described the stories that changed him and his rationale for why health, family, friends and education should be priorities over a career.
“Everything except my work life was failing,” said Wilson, as he told of a time when his daughter told an important phone caller that he was not home, when he was. When he angrily confronted her, she explained, “Well you never are.”
For Wilson, that moment changed everything. At the conclusion of his presentation, Wilson told the audience that his current relationship with his children would rank at a 9 out of 10, because he “can always be better.”
Amongst the trials of failing relationships and even being diagnosed with cancer, Wilson continues to believe in and be inspired by the idea of entrepreneurship. He said, “Each of you has a choice where you’ll go with your career. You’re each an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurship is just a frame of thinking.”
With this, he offered the three classes he deems most important for students to take, regardless of their field of study or career path: marketing, entrepreneurship and philanthropy. He explained that if one understands these things, he or she will be successful no matter what they do, because he or she will know how to compete and form meaningful relationships on all levels.
At the end of the event, L. Russell Brown came out as a special guest and sang his famous song “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree,” dedicated to Wilson.
To learn more about Wilson and his philosophy of success and mistakes, click here.