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Live, Laugh, Languages festival brings linguistic knowledge to Plaza

Students+mingle+around+tables+on+a+sunny+plaza.
Collegian | Samantha Nordstrom
The Russian Club and the Arabic Culture and Language Club tabling at the Live, Laugh, Languages festival on The Plaza at Colorado State University April 3.

The Lory Student Center Plaza was engulfed with color and song thanks to the Live, Laugh, Languages festival, which was held by a number of Colorado State University’s language clubs April 3. The event was organized by Frédérique Grim, who is a professor of French at CSU. 

Sounds and sights from all over the world filled the air as students stopped by between classes or went to and from the LSC. Grim discussed the cultures and languages included in the festival as well as their importance.

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“We have 10 languages represented and many, many cultures: (American Sign Language), Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Russian and Spanish,” Grim said. 

Grim reflected on the importance of learning languages.

“It is important for our CSU students to think about adding a language to their current majors through a double major, minor or just taking a few classes, as it adds so much to their future careers and opens doors to many more opportunities,” Grim said. “In addition, it brings so much to their personal understanding of the world.”

Although students could stop by and learn more about the respective clubs and cultures, students were also the ones running each table and giving out snacks and fun facts. 

Thalia Gustina is a senior and president of the Arabic Culture and Language Club, and she discussed the goal of the festival and why it was held. 

“The main goal is just to get as many students … who are just passing through (or) interested in the language, opportunities at CSU,” Gustina said. 

Furthermore, Gustina discussed why organizations like the Arabic Club were introduced to campus. Gustina said she began the Arabic Club with a fellow student minoring in Arabic two years ago to provide more opportunities on campus outside of class to help with things like homework. 

“It is important for our CSU students to think about adding a language to their current majors through a double major, minor or just taking a few classes, as it adds so much to their future careers and opens doors to many more opportunities. In addition, it brings so much to their personal understanding of the world.” –Frédérique Grim, French professor

Another culture and language represented was Korean. 

Fifth-year English student Jordan Kingsbury represented Korea and detailed her connection to the Korean Club at CSU.

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“If I had the chance, I’d come back as a freshman and … continue with my path on Korean because I’m graduating this semester,” Kingsbury said. “I didn’t even know it was offered until this last semester.” 

She added more on the event’s wider goal and hopes and also discussed how Korean is the only language — other than Latin, Greek and Hebrew — offered at CSU that doesn’t have a minor.

“I’m very happy to be part of this club because it helps kind of grow this beginning Korean interest,” Kingsbury said. 

More emphasis was placed on inclusivity and the notion that there is no prior experience needed to join a club or learn about a culture. 

“You don’t have to be a part of Korean class in order to be part of the club,” Kingsbury said. 

Gustina also discussed the role of international clubs. 

“As a club, we do a mixture of language and cultural events,” Gustina said. “We want everyone to come; there’s no language knowledge requirement.” 

Language courses are offered in a variety of way — either just as courses or as a major or minor. More information on each club can be found on the CSU languages, literatures and cultures department website

Reach Aubree Miller at life@collegian.com or on Twitter @CSUCollegian.

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