ASA hosts Africa Night

May 3, 2018



Staff Reporter | tmw055@latech.edu


The African Student Association’s event showcased African culture through singing, fashion, food and dancing. – Photo by Precious Brown


The African Student Association hosted its first Africa Night that gave students and the Ruston community the chance to experience African culture with an evening composed of dancing, singing, fashion and traditional African foods.


The ASA is a newer organization that helps establish an African unity at Louisiana Tech.


“So far here at Tech, we haven’t had any African representation,” said Mercy Karanja, vice president of ASA. “Forming ASA was more of an internal issue where we just wanted to bring the Africans together. However, it was also an issue that no one knew a lot about Africa.”


Karanja, a senior biomedical engineering major, said the organization began planning for Africa Night during fall quarter of last year.


“No one knows what our culture is, no one knows our struggle, some people don’t even know that there are actually many African students here,” she said. “We just wanted to bring that to the table and make sure people know we have African students and let them know that they can be a part of the community and have exposure to the culture as well.”


Karanja said in the future, ASA’s goal would be to strengthen the African community and have Africa Night as an annual event.


“We’re about to have elections very soon, so we have to make sure that our new officers are up to the challenge because it was a challenge starting it,” she said. “We also need a strong force to be able to keep it; such that it is going to be strong enough that it will never fall apart.”


Oluwatoyosi Kade, member of ASA, said the organization hosted Africa Night to make African culture and ASA more noticed on campus.


“We were like ‘Why not do something to make us known to the entire school, like an event?’” she said. “The school will be more aware of ASA and we can have more people come join us so we decided to do this.”


Kade, a senior computer science major, said she felt like it was important to host events like Africa Night at Tech to encourage people to learn more about the culture.


“I’ve had so many people assume that Africa is a country,” she said. “I personally feel that events like this will let people know more about Africa and it will enlighten them.”


Aerial Stanford, a sophomore elementary education major, said Africa Night was an amazing experience that kept her engaged.


“With it being its first year, I didn’t really know what to expect,” she said. “But I was excited. I knew it would be fun and high energy. It exceeded my expectations.”


Stanford said she attended the event to experience a different side of the culture.


“I was curious to see and explore the culture,” she said. “I really didn’t know more than what the media would tell me. I wanted to get their side of it and get their input on it.”


Stanford said she felt like it was important for students to have a platform to show their culture.


“Everything about tonight was significant because they all had the time to share their countries,” she said. “This was a time for us to sit and listen and watch and take that in. It was awesome. I really learned a lot.”


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