Tour of the Globe: Students Explore Cultures from Springfield

Austin Kelly, The Black Bear – Tour of the Globe lets students experience different cultures while learning about their customs and traditions.

International Services hosted the event in the Jim D. Morris center Friday night. It allowed for students to explore various places, sample food, and view traditions of several different countries.   

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Black Bear Reporter Sabrina Merrill takes a selfie with four-week transfer student Lorenzo de la Cruz Pardillo. Photo by Austin Kelly.

“The event offers MSU community and Springfield community a taste of different cultures out of the U.S.,” said Kelly Cabrera, a Spanish professor at MSU who helped with the Columbia room.

Samantha Francka is a member of International Programs. She helped plan Tour of the Globe and said the event was an easy way for students to get a sense of other cultures.

“For students and community who are visiting, it really is an opportunity to travel around the world without leaving Springfield,” said Francka. “International travel has lots of barriers, both real and perceived, so we’re happy to bring these cultures to Springfield so they’re accessible to a larger population.”

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Some international students talked about the hardest thing for an American studying away might have to adapt to.

Le Son, an international student from Vietnam, said the traffic would be the most difficult thing for people from America to adjust to. “Its a mess,” he said.

Son also said it’s hard to find safe food in the city and to know which places to go eat.

Rosario Strain used to live in Peru and helped set up the country’s room. Her answers mirrored Son’s.

“Probably the traffic in Lima,” Strain said. “It’s a big city, if something happened you would get stuck.”

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Traditional Chinese masks and art displayed at Tour of the Globe. Photo by Austin Kelly.

Joyce Zhoa, an international student from China, said that the hardest thing to adapt to would be the language.

“It’s hard to learn,” Zhoa said. “Crossing the street is different too. (In China), people stop for cars instead of cars stopping for people.”

Global studies major Aline Gomes, a Brazilian international graduate student, said Brazil’s friendly culture is very different from America’s reserved one.

“The hardest thing for people to adapt to would be that we’re very family-orientated and social, where Americans are really individual” Gomes said. 

Some other differences Gomes identified were that it’s actually rude to show up to something early, they aren’t very strict and the climate is very hot. 

While studying away in Germany, senior Emma Farley, a global studies and Spanish major, said that the hardest thing for her to adapt to was speaking German while at school but English at home.

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Varying flags hang at the entrance of the event. Photo by Austin Kelly.

Francka said Tour of the Globe opened up new worlds for students and the Springfield community to see and experience. It also helped students who participated educate others on the countries they hail from.

“I think for students who share their cultures, it’s a great opportunity to showcase who you are and where you come from,” said Francka. “Missouri State has rich cultural diversity, but it’s not always easy to see and appreciate.

“Tour of the Globe is a chance to really highlight that diversity.”

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