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Connecting cultures

Cultural style on campus has significant and raw meaning hardly explained by just a glance. To further explore the styles sported by the 70-plus nations at ORU, students were given a chance to explain how it impacts their daily lives.

“The culture pieces I wear are from the Democratic Republic of Congo,” said Emmanuel Bampende.
“I wear them because they’re comfortable and remind me of where I’m from. It means a lot to me because I haven’t been there since I left all those years ago. Wearing my clothes brings me memories of my home country. To me American style is something [that] is whatever is popular at the time…and what’s in the media,” said Bampende.

Students typically wear these styles to Chapel and Saga where students can see them. The contrasting styles shown in Saga can cause quite a stir form the usual dress pants and jeans with collared shirts to Indian kurtas and African shirts with tribal elements. Bright colors usually depict the innate prints, and are complimented by different sheens or matte established cottons.

“I like to wear my native material made into anything like pants, or dresses or skirts,” said Ama Aniekwu.

“It is my culture and I am proud of it. Most of the pieces are colorful and have unique colors and textures. I like mixing the two, American and Nigerian style together. It has a nice effect. I feel like this is my heritage,” said Aniekwu.

Jewelry is a prominent theme with bracelets from native countries lining wrists and adorning necks strapped with symbolic pieces. Indian sashes complement as accessories.

“I wear [my kurta] when I run out of laundry, and [because it is] comfy,” said Samuel Prithiv.
“It represents a people group from my country. It reminds [me] of friends, family, school and memories. American style is loud,” said Prithiv.

Foreign students can enjoy making a lasting impression upon the student body by allowing their fashion pieces to tell a story about their homeland.

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