OSWEGO — SUNY Oswego’s ALANA Student Leadership Conference celebrates 30 years of multicultural events Sept. 17 to 24 with happenings ranging from fashion show to banquet, from peace walk to cultural festival, from educational activities to entertainment.
The African, Latino, Asian and Native American Student Leadership Conference began in 1986 as a daylong celebration of the multifaceted aspects of culture, diversity and heritage. Today it is a weeklong signature observance that embodies SUNY Oswego’s pride in sustaining an atmosphere of mutual understanding and respect.
Aloaye Tisor, president of the African Student Organization, said she is excited to help lead an organization “that has a long legacy of success. I’m excited to be part of that legacy and to uphold it.”
The ASO annually joins with the Asian Student Association, Black Student Union, Caribbean Student Association, Latino Student Union and with Maggie Rivera, the college’s student involvement coordinator, in the yearlong effort to plan such events as the Fashion Show, the Unity Peace Walk, Collections of Expressions multicultural performances and the gala banquet.
“The theme this year is ‘Diamond in the Rough,'” Rivera said. “For a conference to last this long, it’s like a diamond — it’s hard to find a diamond among the rocks. Students over the years have had to overcome many challenges to get the conference where it is today.”
Highlights of this year’s conference will include:
* ALANA Fashion Show at 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17. Hosted by alumnus DJ Tumbo and guest comedian Gina Brillon, the college’s students, faculty, staff and families will model cultural fashion trends in the modernized Waterman Theatre. Tickets are $7 ($5 for SUNY Oswego students, faculty and staff) and are available at all SUNY Oswego box offices, online at tickets.oswego.edu or by calling 315-312-2141.
* The sixth annual Unity Peace Walk, designed to build lasting relationships between the greater Oswego community and the campus, will start at 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 18, from Oswego City Hall, 13 W. Oneida St., and proceed to the quad in front of Penfield Library in honor of the original March on Washington in 1963. Community members are encouraged to join.
* In cooperation with the college’s observance of the International Year of Brazil, a variety of campus organizations will present the Brazil Cultural Festival at 6 p.m. Sept. 18 in Marano Campus Center food and activity court. Brazilian food and the music of the Latino Student Union’s Ritmo dance club will highlight the interactive celebration.
* SUNY Oswego alumnus Niall Pope, class of 2012, will make a keynote speech about leadership development and professional growth in a diverse world at 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 19, in Marano Campus Center auditorium.
* Black Violin — Wil Baptiste and Kevin “Kev Marcus” Sylvester, a strings duo of growing reputation that blends classical, hip-hop, rock, rhythm and blues and bluegrass music — will appear in concert with their band and turntable whiz DJ SPS at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 20, in Waterman Theatre. Tickets are $25 ($5 for all students) and are available at all SUNY Oswego box offices, online at tickets.oswego.edu or by calling 315-312-2141.
* Collections of Expressions with entertainers Josh Dekaney and Samba Laranja, Syracuse University’s Brazilian ensemble, will enable students, faculty and staff to present cultural poetry, readings, music and dance from around the world in a free performance at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, in Marano Campus Center auditorium.
* The ALANA Banquet Gala will open its doors at 5:45 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, in Sheldon Hall ballroom, for a 6:30 p.m. dinner. Performances from members of ALANA’s partner organizations and DJ Tumbo will help celebrate a year’s worth of work leading to a week’s worth of events. Tickets are $15 ($10 for SUNY Oswego faculty, staff and students).
Parking for ticketed events is included, and is available in employee and commuter lots closest to each venue. Parking for all other events requires a current SUNY Oswego permit; visit oswego.edu/parking for information on obtaining a $1 day-use permit.
For more information, visit oswego.edu/alana.