During its first meeting of the year, the Asian American Association featured a lot of different cultural activities.

A large crowd participated in activities such as origami, a dance party and scavenger hunt, at the Asian American Association’s first fall meeting Sept. 2.

That meeting wasn’t all a party, however, with a number of events on the horizon.

Loi Vo, 20, vice president of the Asian American Association, said it’s great to be back in-person.

“It was great in the sense of the community coming back because it was sad last year,” Vo said. “We tried to do online stuff, and it was like ‘crickets.’ It made me really happy when one of our previous alumni came, and he put on his story that he was so proud of us and I was thankful.” 

Vo said he enjoys putting together events for AAA.

“For AAA while we were all inside, I had a lot of fun ideas I wanted to try, and now if I find it fun, people are going to have a blast.”

AAA has created a community for Asian Americans and for other cultures. This diverse community is allowing students at the University to meet and make friends and enjoy upcoming events on campus. 

Marie Ensell, 21, president of AAA, said they have a couple of upcoming events planned.

“We have ‘The World’s a Stage’ performance on Oct. 21,” Ensell said. “It’s basically a collaborative event where we invite multiple, different performers to showcase dances from different parts of the world. We also have a relaxation night planned for when we get closer to the end of the semester. It’ll feature coloring books and hot chocolate, and be very relaxed and toned down for our members.”

Ensell has a dance background in classical ballet and Chinese dance. For “The World’s a Stage” performance she taught the first class for this semester’s performance Tuesday in one of the University Center’s stairwells.

The dance consisted of arm movements and slow coordination in keeping with the music.

Since COVID-19 restrictions have decreased significantly, students are beginning to find their place in college and enjoy in-person community.

Judy Ramos,19, a freshman at the University of Memphis, said she liked the format for the first meeting.

“It was nice and was better than other mass meetings that I’ve gone to where people just sit down, listen to the information and just leave,” Ramos said. “They had an activity for people to bond together, instead of saying, ‘Okay, now mingle.’”

Like Ramos, another freshman, MacKenzie Myrie-Brown,18, said, “Getting to know everybody was the best part, and having the groups collaborate like AAA, AA and HSA (Hispanic Student Association) was very cultural.”

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