October 23, 2002
During the week of Oct. 28-Nov. 1, Maryville College students other than those enrolled in Dr. Scott Brunger's World Cultures 310: Sub-Saharan Africa class will have the opportunity to experience Africa.
"Africa Week" is scheduled for next week on the college campus. The Blount County community, as well as the campus community, is invited to experience African history, food, music and religion during the five-day observation. Similar week-long observations are planned at other colleges and universities throughout the year.
Sponsored by the Black Students Association, the Peace and World Concerns Committee and the Voices of Praise gospel choir, Maryville College's Africa Week is organized to help shed light on the people, politics, culture and economics of a place many know as "the Dark Continent."
"I hope [Africa Week] dispels myths that Africa has no food, no clothes and no religion," said Brunger, associate professor of economics at the College. "In an African Studies class it is not sufficient to analyze African culture, you have to live it too. We hope that by having students organize Africa Week, they will recognize that African food is good, African clothes are fun, and African music is invigorating.
"I have very much appreciated the leadership of African and African-American students and alumni in organizing this Africa Week," he added.
Currently, African countries like Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, Sudan and Tunisia are represented in the student body. All of the African students are participating in the organization of Africa Week, along with an employee of the College who grew up in Ethiopia.
Frank Twum-Barimah, a junior from Ghana, said he has found planning Africa Week very encouraging.
"At Maryville College, we talk a lot about diversity and building one community of students," he said. "Africa Week has made me feel a part of this community because people are learning about and celebrating my culture.
"I appreciate the American students' response to these events and their work on this program."
A listing of the events include:
Maryville College is ideally situated in Maryville, Tenn., between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Knoxville, the state‘s third largest city. Founded in 1819, it is the 12th oldest institution of higher learning in the South and maintains an affiliation with the Presbyterian Church (USA). Known for its academic rigor and its focus on the liberal arts, Maryville is where students come to stretch their minds, stretch themselves and learn how to make a difference in the world. Total enrollment for the fall 2012 semester was 1,093.