ASA’s twelfth annual Africa week to highlight intracontinental diversity

| News Editor

The African Students Association will host “From Tunis to Cape Town,” the 12th annual Africa Week, Oct. 27-Nov. 2, furthering the organization’s commitment to representing the entire African continent.

Programming will consist of a speaker event on Monday, Taste of Africa on Tuesday, an African marketplace on Wednesday, a graduate student mixer on Thursday and a surprise event on Saturday.

“One of the major goals of the African student association is to represent the diversity of the African continent because…people portray Africa to be so monolithic…” co-vice president of the African Students Association (ASA) junior Maëlle Joanne Attikossie said. “So we wanted to make sure that everybody feels represented. We are ASA from Tunis all the way down to Cape Town, representing all of Africa.”

To include even more regions of the African continent in the week’s programming, Taste of Africa, a buffet of various African dishes, will feature a more diverse array of food, adding Morroccan and Libyan food to the table this year.

The event will take place in McMillan Cafe on Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Tickets are currently on sale for $5.

On Monday, the ASA will host an interactive panel discussion featuring Dr. Menna Demessie, vice president of policy analysis and research for the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Danforth University Center (DUC).

“She’ll be coming in and talking to students about international relations between the U.S. and Africa and the influence that African politics and economics has on the world,” Hagan said.

ASA member senior Brandon Williams initiated the connection with Demessie this summer.

“Brandon Williams met her because she gave a talk to his internship cohort…in D.C. last summer. So, she gave a talk and he spoke to her afterwards,” Attikossie said.

On Wednesday, the ASA will host an African Marketplace event from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the DUC.

“We’re trying to replicate a marketplace that you’d see in most countries in the African continent,”ASA President senior Chibueze Agwu said. “So we [are bringing] in a lot of vendors from the St. Louis community and they [will] just come in and sell their goods, whether it be cocoa butter, Shea butter, black soap, sandals or cloth.”

On Thursday, all graduate chapters of the ASA will be invited to the Goldberg Formal Lounge at 6 p.m. to meet and network with ASA members across academic disciplines and schools.

Although ASA representatives declined to provide details about Saturday’s surprise, Agwu elaborated on the ASA’s plans after Africa Week, highlighting their upcoming fashion show in February.

“[Our] next earliest large event is going to be next February with the ASA fashion show…it is just another chance to display who we are through clothes…” Agwu said. “We usually get a super large turnout, so I’m very excited for that.”

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