Mu Sigma Upsilon 17th Annual R.A.C.E Event


Courtesy of Brittany Opoku-Asamoah

Maria Zuniga, Staff Writer

On March 28, Mu Sigma Upsilon Sorority, Inc. hosted their 17th annual R.A.C.E. (Recognizing and Celebrating Ethnicities). The event began with an introduction of the theme, “city life” by Brittany Opoku-Asamoah. Other previous themes have been “the tree of life” and “beach resort.” Cheyenne Jacobs spoke about the importance of keeping cultures alive through advocacy and awareness. The event featured all types of foods, performances, and music to illustrate the diversity of cultures.

“We allow all students, not only this campus but from different campuses, even faculty and staff to come in and basically show us what it is to be a part of their culture,” stated Cheyenne Jacobs, a graduating senior at William Paterson University.

R.A.C.E. is big on giving people a platform to be free to express their cultural. The event had food from Italian, African American, Dutch and Latin American cultures. Performances included culture from West Africa, The Dominican Republic, South Asia, South Korea, Japan and the United Kingdom. A group named Between Pam and Cynthia and Ashley Maignan sang live. Brittany Anderson danced, praise-danced and vogued. Music genres included hip-hop, Caribbean, alternative, indie, and old school rock.

Poetry and dances were mixed together, beginning with a poem that showed being torn between two cultures and ending with live Polynesian dancing. The dance teams from William Paterson University and Montclair State University attend the event to support and show their cultures.

The organization hopes to help people understand what culture really is. Their definition of culture is centered on one’s beliefs- how they live their life and how their experiences impact them. Different walks of life were also illustrated.

Different expressions of art, struggles, and lifestyles.

Mu Sigma Upsilon Sorority, Inc., is the first multicultural sorority in the nation. Five Latina women in Rutgers University- New Brunswick founded the organization in 1981. Their goal was for every woman to empower one another no matter their race or religion or any other difference. There are currently seven active undergraduate sisters at William Paterson University and 60 altogether in the chapter.

The organization hopes that William Paterson students and faculty take away three major ideas. The first is that culture is all around and that people should appreciate each culture no matter the differences. Secondly, people should all stand up and let their voice be heard when it comes to people’s human rights. Lastly, the organization is here to help educate the university and community, spreading principles of respect and solidarity.

“This event for us at least, for our organization lets individuals express themselves with no judgment,” stated Jesenia Perez a senior nursing student at William Paterson University. “That’s one of my favorite parts about this event.”

Mu Sigma Upsilon’s upcoming events include “When the Stars Align,” April 5 at 7 p.m. in room 209. Speakers will focus on how personal western zodiac signs influence relationships with people. On April 11 at 7 p.m. in room 209, “Ladies Night” will make for an interesting meeting. On the same day to support their Philanthropy “To Write Love on Her Arms” a spring bake sale will be held during common hour.