The Student News Site of Chatham University


The Student News Site of Chatham University


The Student News Site of Chatham University


Chatham holds annual cultural dinner

On the evening of Friday, September 25, the quad was set up in a picnic-style fashion. Chatham students, faculty, and staff sat at round tables chatting with one another. Unlike most Chatham picnics, however, instead of hot dogs and boca burgers there was a chance to indulge in international delicacies. This is was the annual Global Focus picnic, sponsored by the Laughlin Global Citizen Living Learning Community.

The food at the picnic included many ethnic dishes. The start of the buffet had a variety of salads from an Asian Cucumber Slaw to an African Chickpea and Peppadew salad.

Moving up the buffet to the entrees, there were the Brazilian Black Bean Stew and the Hispanic Lime Portabellas Soft Tacos, which also included a vegan option.

“We love the donuts,” said seniors Kelly Nestman and Tiffany Schmidt.

However, those donuts were actually Sopaipillas. Sopapillas are a fried dessert pastry derived from Spanish roots.  The Sopapillas were served with ice cream and topped with cherries and whipped cream.

The planning of the cultural dinner was a combined effort of the Office of Residence Life and Student Activities, Student Affairs, and Parkhurst Catering.

“Our goal was to offer a diverse collection of food to supplement the student’s homemade dishes,” said director of catering, Scott Steiner.

The cultural dinner offered students the opportunity to share and prepare a dish from their country or even an old family recipe.

Many of recipes have been passed down from generation to generation.  Senior Sarah Weinschenker made Sausage Balls, a German-American dish that is usually eaten during the holidays and is very simple to prepare.

First-year Melanie Landsittel prepared homemade pasta and sauce. Her family is from Naples, Italy, and this is how they prepare pasta. Landsittel’s pasta  ran out almost immediately.

Assistant Director of Career Services Crystal Vietmeier had a chance to try the pasta.

“The sauce alone was excellent,” she said.

Many of the international students prepared dishes from their home country.  International student Eleonor Nilsson made Swedish meatball in honor of her home country, Sweden.  Swedish meatballs are commonly eaten during the holidays but can appear during regular dinners.

“It is a old-fashion Swedish meal and simple to make,” Nilsson said.

Rachael Dymski, who is the Graduate Resident Director of Rea and Laughlin House and who was the main organizer for the cultural dinner found it to be a success.

“I am very happy with the turnout and very impressed with how well all the dishes turned out,” she said.

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