UMD Community gets to know heritage with KNOW YOUR ROOTS event


It is often said that food brings people together, but Community Roots proved that cultural differences can prove to unite people as well.

On Thursday, Nov. 13,  UMD’s own Community Roots held their annual “Know Your Roots” event in the Colony Ballroom at Stamp. The night featured individuals from places such as the Caribbean, Africa, and Latin America. A flag representing these countries was set out on each table setting the tone for the night.

Hosts, Rex Jarrett and Andrew Mulinge speaks to the audience. (Nicole Ebanks/Pulsefeedz)


The Colony Ballroom filled with attendees.
The Colony Ballroom filled with attendees. (Nicole Ebanks/Pulsefeedz)

Attendees were asked to text their meaning of culture with their answers appearing on a screen in the front of the room. Most responses were thought-provoking while others were just humorous.

“Culture is empowering. It is a foundation for an individual,” a response read. Others read, “Culture is sticky rice.” and “Culture is the Schmoney Dance.”

Past and new e-board members smile for the camera.
Past and new e-board members of Community Roots pose for a group photo. (Nicole Ebanks/Pulsefeedz)

A poem, read by Abisola Kusimo, senior mechanical engineering major, spoke about the ambiguities that come with her name, connecting with many individuals in the audience. However, she said she appreciates her name and encourages others to accept it as well.

The night included more poetry and a performance by Rak Shalom, a Jewish acapella group. Their songs featured elements of music by R&B artist Rihanna. The restaurant Moby Dick located in Stamp provided food including rice, chicken and lamb. Also, there was a “Selfie” competition where individuals were asked to take the best selfies by themselves or with other attendees. Prizes for the competition were $10-gift cards from Starbucks and Noodles & Company.

Rak Shalom, a Jewish acapella group, sings on stage.
Rak Shalom, a Jewish acapella group, sings on stage. (Nicole Ebanks/Pulsefeedz)
Food is served! Moby Dick catered for the event. (Nicole Ebanks/Pulsefeedz)

The theme of respect for all cultures was expressed as the program concluded.