“You are invited to ASEAN Night

Event Overload

“You are invited to ASEAN Night!” “You are invited to the Pakistani Mock Wedding!” “You are invited to Latino Night!” “You are invited to Arab Cultural ...

Apr 16, 2016

“You are invited to ASEAN Night!”
“You are invited to the Pakistani Mock Wedding!”
“You are invited to Latino Night!”
“You are invited to Arab Cultural Week!”
My event notifications are going wild this month. I keep seeing posters and receiving reminders about all the amazing and attractive Student Interest Groups events that are happening this month. It takes constant clicking on Facebook to show whether I’m going or just interested, or explanations that I’ll be there and dancing to the beats of Arabic, Latin and K-pop songs.
Don’t get me wrong, I love that all these events are happening, but after what seemed like an everlasting dry spell, I was just taken by surprise by all of these events happening at once. Every Thursday and Friday, there is some sort of an event that allows NYU Abu Dhabi students to showcase their rich cultures.
One of the main reasons I came to NYUAD was to immerse myself in the rich cultures which are represented here. I absolutely loved African Night and many of the other cultural events that were held last semester, and I truly felt that they were evenly spaced. We had enough time to embrace the culture and digest the event itself. This semester, we’ve had several cultural events one after the other.
I think that the general sentiment within the student population is one of frustration. Given that it is almost the end of the semester, work is piling up and it is not possible to devote every weekend evening to eating oneself through the cultural foods presented. This event stress just adds to the stress levels we already experience because of academics.
What bothers me the most is that for the first few months in the semester, nothing seemed to be happening. Calendars were empty, except for classes and meetings with professors. No cultural or other interesting events. But now with the academic year coming to an end, calendars are full. It seems like SIGs realized that they have a lot more funding than they thought they had, and thought they might as well plan a large-scale event for the community. This is great, but maybe they could have budgeted their money earlier so that the events would be more evenly spread.
When planning events, I suggest that in the future the SIGs talk to each other and collaboratively decide upon times to hold their events. This will allow for a better distribution of events on campus throughout the semester. Collaboration is crucial here: the Arts Center, SIGs, the NYUAD Institute and other relevant parties should all communicate with one another so that the massive attack of events won’t happen again.
Nonetheless, I’m super excited about all of the upcoming events and have thoroughly enjoyed all of the past ones. I think such events are a part of what makes NYUAD so special. We need to be the global leaders that we are, and talk about the cultures we are exposed to.
Nevertheless, I love these events and you will still see me eating knafeh, dancing to Celebra la Vida and singing K-pop songs. I just wish I had more time to embrace all of the events one by one, instead of having to dance from one cultural night to another.
Nela Noll is a staff writer. Email her at
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