Big Bend Community College students, faculty and staff enjoyed an enriching experience Wednesday at the Multicultural Fair sponsored by the Student Success Center.

Cultural displays were setup inside the Masto Conference Center representing a variety of countries from around the world with informational boards, culturally significant items, and traditional food to sample from the country featured.

While participants enjoyed the displays, the Lindy Hoppers dance club, music instructor Michael Dzbenski, and the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu club provided entertainment. The fair concluded with a keynote speech by Luis Ortega.

students listening to keynote speaker Ortegas

Ortega is a TEDx Speaker and founder of Storytellers for Change, an organization that utilizes narratives to promote social change. He travels across the country talking to students at colleges and universities. In search of a better future, his family migrated from Mexico to the United States when he was 14. The transition was tough, as his family had to adapt to a new culture that was not always welcoming.

Ortega delivered a message about his life growing up in Mexico and the United States. He shared his experiences being a first generation college student and beginning his career as a professional speaker. The main topic of his speech provided advice on how the students could bridge the cultural gaps that separated them – listen to one another.

“We are strangers to each other, and it’s easy to fear and hate who you don’t know,” Ortega shared. “There is nothing easy and simple about listening to other people especially when in your eyes they are just some stranger … never forget to listen.”

students sharing info at multi cultural fairstudents at display of Vietnam at multicultural fairdisplay at multi cultural fair students at display of Japan at multi cultural fair

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