International Week ends with Latin-culture rhythm

International Week 2007 will cap off its tour of cultures with a pair of dancing shoes tonight.To celebrate the Latin American culture and the culmination of International Week, the International Student Association is inviting all students to join a night of free Latin American dancing lessons at the restaurant and club Gloria’s.

The objective of the “Latin Carnival” is for the students to both have fun and be given a taste of one of the most prominent aspects of Latin American culture – dancing, said Michelle Fabrega, ISA president and junior advertising/public relations major.

“There are a lot of TCU students from Latin America, and we want to show others what Latin America is about,” Fabrega said.

The festivities, which will include free salsa dance lessons taught by professional dancers and accompanied by a live band, will start around 9:30 p.m. Friday and will last until the club closes at 2 a.m., Fabrega said.

But dancing won’t be the only chance for people to experience the Latin American culture tonight, said Maria Correa, a junior marketing major and member of ISA who comes from Colombia.

Correa said Gloria’s will also offer authentic El Salvadorian food such as pulpusa, a corn mixture similar to a tortilla, plantanes and churrascitas, or steak.

“This is a good opportunity to create awareness of international students because other students don’t always try to connect,” Correa said. “We’re very open and we want students to know it.”

Karen Estrada, a junior finance and accounting major, said the Feb. 22 carnival’s opening ceremony, which had a live band playing African beats, had the largest attendance of any International Week ceremony ever.

“The focus of International Week was to have a set of events with international components but also to make them educational,” Estrada said.

Estrada said that just having a small taste of different cultures can assist people in work, travel and life.

“Everything is global now,” Estrada said. “You could be traveling and know something about the place and can say, ‘Oh, I have a friend from there. They eat this food and dance like this.’