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Fusion Fiesta

Stephanie Cannon '06 December 2, 2012 4:53 PM

The number 12 holds a special meaning for Aggies. From its origin on the football field when E. King Gill responded to the call to help his team, the 12th Man has always represented a spirit of selfless service, enthusiasm and devotion to Texas A&M.

To celebrate that Aggie spirit of support, The Association of Former Students will feature special stories through Dec. 12 to show how your donation to The Association of Former Students makes a difference.

When you give to Texas A&M through The Association of Former Students, you are supporting traditions, student organizations, students and student events, like Fusion Fiesta. When you give, you are strengthening Texas A&M. Learn how to give to The Association of Former Students at

Thank you for supporting Texas A&M University! Happy 12-12-12, Aggies!

Owais Sarwar ’16 walked around the backside of Rudder Fountain with a plate full of food. As a new freshman, he’d been looking for opportunities to learn about the diversity among Texas A&M’s student body. When he saw a poster for Fusion Fiesta 2012 earlier that week, he knew he’d found it.

“This is much bigger and better than I was expecting,” he said.

The self-described student of global cultures took a bite from a tiny rice cake from the Philippians.

“This is my favorite,” he said. He’d also enjoyed South Korea’s shrimp flavored chips and Pakistan’s cream soda.

Food was only one part of this MSC-run event, made possible in part because of donors to The Association of Former Students.

Fusion Fiesta is held annually as an opportunity to unite the Aggie community while promoting Aggieland's diversity. Information tables manned by student organizations from the Department of Multicultural Services framed the fountain, and music pulsed from speakers as a crowd gathered to watch different dance performances.  

Gabriel Landaverde ’14, a member of Phi lota Alpha Fraternity, stood by Cuba’s table, passing out coffee and coconut cookies. “Cuba is known for a certain type of espresso,” he said. It is also known for coconut
cookies. “They go together well,” he said, passing a steaming cup to a Classmate.

“We chose Cuba because of Jose Marti,” he said—Marti is a Cuban national hero whose writings were instrumental in Cuba’s struggle for independence from Spain. Marti is also one of pillars of Phi lota Alpha.

“Fusion Fiesta helps students gain an appreciation for diversity and get out of their little bubble,” he said. By bringing out and learning about perceived differences, students are actually connected.

Nearby at the table representing Nepal, a student ran her finger along a map.

“Yes, here it is. My dad just got back from here,” she said.

It helps the Aggie family when we are connected, Landaverde said. Already bonded through the Aggie Spirit, learning about each other weaves an individual story into a shared experience.  

Around 400 student participated or attended Fusion Fiesta.

To view photos of the event, view this Flickr page. The Battalion covered past Fusion Fiestas here and here.

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