MLEC students participate in UN Day and celebrate their diversity

Wednesday, October 31, 2018 0 Comments

MLEC students participate in UN Day and celebrate their diversity


The United Nations (UN), a phrase coined by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, came into being in 1945. Following the devastation of the Second World War, UN was created with one central mission in mind; to maintain international peace and security. UN Day is a celebration of that mission.

At Miami Lakes Educational Center (MLEC), UN Day is a day to celebrate diversity. During lunch, students were able to embrace their culture, wearing their nation’s typical clothing, sharing traditional foods and connecting with their peers who originate from all over the world.

“I felt proud representing my country, and bringing people from other cultures and countries to show them my country and its food. It was amazing,” said Erick Rivera, a senior in the Health Academy. “Hearing others speak with pride about their nation and offer their goods really made a connection and unity between all different types of people.”

Students set up tables around the courtyard and filled them with spices, drinks and treats from all over the globe. There were 20 tables handled by students that displayed artifacts, maps, photos, musical instruments and some of their favorite delicacies.

“All these people are really passionate about their culture, and I got to learn a little bit of every country represented here today,” said Marilyn Fonseca, a freshman celebrating her first UN Day.

This was the fourth UN Day celebrated at MLEC, and each year the event gets larger and more popular.

“It is wonderful to have an event like this one, where students take the lead to share and teach one another,” said Neyda Borges, MLEC’s English Department chair and journalism adviser. “It demonstrates that our diversity does not divide us, but unites us.”

For some students, particularly from countries affected by Hurricane Irma, this was a chance to showcase things other than destruction.

 “I’m really excited to represent my mother’s island of Puerto Rico,” said student Alexander Rochester. “The island is beautiful, the food is awesome and the people are kind, giving and fun.”

The event, organized by the National Honors Society (NHS) was a hit among teachers as well. Information technology academy leader Marlon Vernon played the bongo drums, educator Yordanka Mezawi sat down for a traditional Cuban game of dominoes and teacher Mike Windisch wore his South African soccer jersey.

As students danced to salsa, cumbia and merengue, the colors of different countries mixed together. Unity captivated MLEC’s campus.

“Each year the students outdo themselves,” said Erica Evans-DeSimone, NHS sponsor and Cambridge Academy leader. “Jaguars show that all the colors of the world, our different accents, dialects, musical rhythms and spices are something to share and celebrate.”

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