For the last two weeks, the Global Lounge in Abbotsford has been host to UFV International’s World Music Videos Fridays. Open to anyone who wants to stop by, the event features music videos from around the world selected by students.
Anoop Dhaliwal, international student staff assistant, says the purpose of the event is “to provide an opportunity for students to share in cultural diversity here at the university.” It is also “an opportunity to provide a stress-free event, just for people to get together, to take a break, whether that be from their office or from studying.”
“My main purpose is to bring people together,” she says.
Dhaliwal is the mastermind of the event, though she credits students for inspiring the idea. “I noticed that in Friends Without Borders, which is a program I coordinate, students quite enjoyed sharing and having dialogue about music videos,” she says. “And I thought it would be great to bring people together to do that on a weekly basis. So that [idea] comes from the students.”
The event requires very little to run, beyond a television and access to YouTube. “I thought: what is something that we can sustain, so the costs of resources and that kind of thing are low?” says Dhaliwal. “Most of our cost is just in snacks, but everything else is all volunteer.” She adds that, “We’re very fortunate here at UFV International to have the biggest television on campus.”
The Why So Serious club, a club dedicated to promoting positivity on campus, is also involved with the event. “We take requests from people,” club president Mithat Singh says, “so they don’t feel left out and so they get a chance to show their culture, and talk about it.”
Singh expects the event to get even larger each week. “We are looking forward to an increase in the number of people showing up every week, by word of mouth,” she says. Indeed, turnout for the second Friday was larger than the first, and extra chairs had to be set up to accommodate the growing audience.
Besides the Why So Serious club, UFV International has several other partners involved with developing, promoting, and executing the event: CiVL Radio, the Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies, UFV Latin club, UFV Arab club, the Circle K club, and Friends Without Borders. The event has been attended by students from a wide range of cultural and geographic backgrounds, and the featured music reflects that.
“We have such a wide diversity here, so why not have that cultural exchange?” Dhaliwal asks.
World Music Videos Fridays will continue weekly until the end of term in April.