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Arabic Flagship Talent Show

First of all, LOOK AT THIS FOOD!! <3 and the pretty program!

 

I have never tasted food like this, and although I was a little hesitant, I must say I was pleasantly surprised! I tried (I think it is called this) pita bread, and oh my goodness my life is changed! It was so good! Definitely a great start to a fun night!

 

Also, I had the opportunity to watch one of my friends perform in one of the videos! Everyone spoke so well, it was amazing! I have always been told that Arabic is one of the hardest language, and that if you truly want to learn it, you have to put in hours upon hours of time. I could definitely tell these students had practiced and were on to big things!

My favorite video was the one over The Oscars! Although I do not understand Arabic, I could still kind of get the gist of what was happening. Everyone acted so well, and it was truly funny! It was a great event to just wind down the week!

Also, I really enjoyed watching the belly dancers! They danced really well, and I could see that they had been practicing for a while. As their beautiful skirts twirled, they looked so graceful and happy.

This talent show really made me consider expanding my knowledge of Arabic and Culture. The people who attended the program were all very welcoming, and encouraging. I’ve always heard that Arabic is one of the most difficult languages to learn, and although it does seem difficult, it seems as though there is a lot of support and encouragement from not only the university, but also other staff members and students. It was a great time, and I am truly happy that I was able to attend!

They gave me something to taco bout! ;) LATINO FLAVOR!

When I heard about Latino Flavor, I was instantly excited! I am from Southside Oklahoma City, and trust me, I know about some tasty Latin American food! Let me tell you, the food did not disappoint!

Here is a video I took of a couple of my friends enjoying the food!

 

Also, they had live performances, and even the opportunity to dance on stage with maracas! It was extremely funny, and a bit scary. The music was playing, people were singing, and all of a sudden, someone runs towards you with maracas trying to persuade you to get on stage and dance!

I think it is really important that we continue having cultural events like these at The University of Oklahoma. During my first few days at OU, I felt a little bit of culture shock. I come from a very diverse community, ethnically and socioeconomically, so it was differently different coming here to OU. While speaking to new friends about issues that directly affect my community, I often get wide-eyed glances of shock. Oftentimes, I return a look of confusion, and then realize that they have absolutely no clue what I am talking about. This okay, and understandable. How is someone whose never really exposed to a different culture supposed to know much about it? These are just a few reasons in which I have chosen to inform others of the problems that my community is faced with every single day, and to advocate for all of those who raised me in South Okc.

So,  Latino Flavor was definitely a great time! It was an awesome experience, and one in which I hope many people, from different and similar backgrounds, felt at home and welcomed.

Out of all the things that bring people together, I must say food is a great one!

Find your way at Second wind Cafe

 

Choose where you want to go.

Choose where YOU want to go.

It’s seems like a fairly simple task, but in reality it can be pretty difficult to do.

Thankfully, I was able to attend one of the meetings at Second wind Cafe and I learned a lot about places that I didn’t really know much about!

On the day of the meeting, I got lost but it was a really funny situation! How can you get lost on campus corner? I don’t know how but I did.  I feel like I switch from being and extrovert to an introvert frequently, so in saying that I was actually pretty nervous to go to the meeting and meet new friends. I was nervous but I still went, and I’m so happy that I did.

First of all, SECOND WIND CAFE IS SO COOL!

It’s like a cozy little living room in the middle campus corner, and their dirty chai tea lattes are great!

The moment I walked in I felt a sense of community, and it was great.

CHILE.

ARGENTINA.

COLOMBIA.

SPAIN.

I felt so comfortable talking to all of those great people about my dreams, my goals, and in the end what I want for myself. It was comforting. Sometimes I feel like it is difficult for me to talk about these things with my family members because they don’t really understand the benefits of studying abroad. My parents are both excited for the opportunity, but are really uneasy about me leaving the country.  So rather than speak to them about it, sometimes I feel like I have to hold it in and confide in friends instead. I feel like it is going to be a learning experience for not only myself, but my parents as well. I have to go for my dreams, and I can’t let others choose them for me.

I think its time to be a little SELFISH.

I don’t know why it is so hard for me to be selfish. I just care a lot, and always want to make sure that everyone is happy.

REALIZATION: I may also be a people pleaser. Yikes.

But in the end of my life, I don’t want to look back and realize that I’ve been living for others rather than myself. IT’S TIME KATELYN, TREAT YO SELF.

With that being said, I’m really feeling Chile :0 , but also a little bit of Puebla.

No matter where I go, I know I will grow and learn even more about myself. I’m really excited to go on my own little adventure for myself.  Also, I feel so fortunate to have this opportunity. Who would’ve known that the same little girl who grew up not even knowing if she would ever pursue higher education is now finishing her first semester of college and discovering where in the world she wants to travel? I am so blessed.

I don’t know what’s next

but,

I’m ready.

or at least I think so.

 

A Glimpse of China at The University of Oklahoma

It was just another day.

I was walking out out of zoology, stressed and a little sad, and then all of a sudden……

I SMELT SOMETHING AMAZING

Then I saw it, the food, the teas, the art..

IT WAS A CHINESE CULTURAL EVENT !!

To be completely honest, I’m pretty ignorant when it comes to Chinese culture. I don’t know much, but I truly appreciate all of the beauty it holds.

Here are some cool things that took place at the event!

Their penmanship is beautiful! Their writing looks like art and takes such skill! They let me try and practice writing my name, and it was horrible! It really is a skill and requires such precision. Also, I really like that I was able to capture people talking in the background. Their language is so fascinating. The vowel sounds and the rhythm in which they spoke was so interesting to me.  All of it was very cool!

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They spelled my name for me! So cool!

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She was so patient with me!

Overall, this was an awesome experience! I definitely got lucky by walking upon this event on campus, and it definitely furthered my interest about China.

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Finally, I thought this was really interesting! It says, ” China, like an economic giant, suddenly appears in front of the world and everybody is shocked. They want to know the history and the home of this giant.”

I learned a lot about China, and think others should, too! Its is filled with rich history and culture, and we can all learn a lot from it!

 

Dia De Los Muertos Street Festival; a day of fun!

What better way to start my post, than to show you this? This boy who looked to be about eight years old, danced to his hearts content. He was one of the best I’ve ever seen! Although he didn’t ever speak verbally, he spoke through his dance honoring the mexican culture and audience with his talent.

Did you see this and think I took an impromptu trip to Mexico?Well if you did, you are right! Just kidding, you’re wrong. I’m still here :(BUT, this was a great performance at The Dia De Los Muertos Street Festival right here in Norman, OK.

At the festival there were countless things to take in such as tons of carnival games, authentic mexican and other latin american cuisine, and last but not least the performance of BANDA CARNIVAL. Oh yeah, and there was also a llama!

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The sun was in our faces so thats why we didn’t look the happiest. We were honestly having a great time!

It was nice to see so many familiar faces in Norman! Many people from Southside OKC came out and represented! Although they came for the festival, they also had the opportunity to see the university as a reality. They can attain this goal, too. It was really a nice way to get people out to OU to see what it is all about. For me personally, it was about more than just the festival. It was about bringing other cultures to OU and telling them you are wanted.

SORRY FOR THE FEELS

Anyways, let’s get to the dramatics. Guys, BANDA CARNIVAL was in NORMAN, OK. Let that sink in. BANDA CARNIVAl. THATS. HUGE.

It was great seeing them live. They are great! Overall, the Dia De Los Muertos festival was an awesome event that not only promoted Mexican culture, but also allowed people from other places to see a major university.

Te veo pronto Mexico!

 

Fear 2016

On November 8, 2016 at approximately 2:30 pm., my friends and I discussed the election. We all expressed our hopes, our fears, our nightmares, and our dreams. We believed in the people, we practiced our right to vote, and we waited for what we thought would be a victorious night. Unfortunately, our dreams were torn from us and we are now confronted with a harsh reality that has come upon the country we call home. The people of The United States with a booming voice, loud and clear, speaks to us in many different ways now.

” We             Don’t          Want       You         Here .”

One may ask, who is the “you” in the sentence above?

Women, LGBTQ+, the Asian Community, the Black Community, the Latino Community, Immigrants, First generation, the Muslim Community, and anyone else who does not fit the mold of a “true American.”

The Campaign slogan was “Make America Great Again”, and honestly I feel as though I’ve just discovered what that truly means.

” Make      America      Ours      Again. ”

This campaign lifted the veil on what is truly going on in this country. We’ve come so far, but we’ve learned so little. It is disheartening, and it is utterly disgraceful.

As I walked through OU today, I did not feel ready to sit in a room with strange faces and pretend last night didn’t happen. I wasn’t ready to confront those who accepted a hateful rhetoric that directly targeted countless people.

Instead, I ponder the fate of my family, and so many others whom I don’t even know. I wish I could send some sort of signal of love to show every family affected that they are not alone.

I am in love with an amazing man who has been by my side for three crazy years. He is honest. He is a hard worker. He is kind and respectful. Also, he is undocumented.

This does not define him as a person. He was brought here when he was two. He was just a little boy with big dreams. This is the only place he has ever called home. He is one of the funniest people I have ever met, and he has never let anything stop him.

I ponder our fate, and wonder what these next four years will have in store for not only us, but our entire family.

Who will stay and watch the kids if God forbid something happens to our parents?

It feels as though all of our hard earned progress has been lost.

This is not a Democrat vs. Republican vs. Independent issue, but this is a human issue. I have never felt so anxious and fearful in my life. This is not the America I know.

I belong here. We belong here. Our parents belong here.

On Wednesday the 10th of November, a protest was held at OU. People from all backgrounds, races, identities, and orientations came together not to promote an environment of hate, but love and unity. Our voices still matter, and we still matter. Hugs were given and many tears were shed, not for a man who has attacked us, but for an entire country who supported it.

Today, I feel strong.

I understand that what has happened is in fact deeply terrifying, but in the end is what we have to deal with four the next four years. We have to deal with an arrogant business man for president, but we do not have to put up with the hateful rhetoric he promotes.

My community will grow stronger. I will grow stronger. Future generations will be stronger. I know I am a pretty optimistic person, and although I am very fearful, the thought of communities coming together in a fight against hatred gives me hope.

I am still pretty concerned and maybe a little anxious, but I have decided that I cannot live these next four years in fear.

I must speak. loudly I must speak, for not only myself but for others who may not look like me. For those who don’t share the same religion as me, the same identity as me, the same sexual orientation as me, I must speak.

CLOSURE in every sense of the word.

I need closure. I think I’ve kind of found closure, a closure to things that cause me to question myself or doubt my presence in each place I attend. I am praying for families who are still in fear, and are reasoned to be. I pray that they find a sort of peace. Whoever you are, you are not alone and you and your voice do not deserve to be tossed aside.

Thank you.

Thank you to whoever is reading this and made it all the way to end. Thanks for listening to my opinion, even if you don’t necessarily agree with it. I appreciate your willingness to hear others and to see the other side. Even if you don’t feel as I’ve described above, I hope that you look out for the ones that do.

 

 

Purpose

Coming in to The University of Oklahoma, I had no clue what to expect. I definitely was excited, but I cant deny that I was really anxious about it. I guess it was just the feeling of something new coming to me, a new chapter of life full of adventure but also hardship. Being a first generation college student, I’ve never really seen someone struggle through college. I knew it was going to be hard, but who knew there were so many secret tricks to help! I know that I came to this university to not only change the cycle in my family, but also in my community as well. I came in knowing I had a purpose, but it took a team of supporters around me here at OU to help me truly believe that I can actually fulfill it. So to anyone who feels alone or as if you don’t belong at a university, you do. Find your motivation and make your dreams realities.

These are just some of the awesome people who keep me going. The people who you surround yourself truly affect your success. Photo credit to THE Angie Tran

These are just some of the awesome people who keep me going. The people who you surround yourself truly affect your success. Photo credit to THE Angie Tran

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