With Chinese New Year being this past weekend, Saturday Jan. 25, the Brandeis Undergraduate Taiwanese Student Association  hosted an event on Wednesday in the Intercultural Center lounge called “Celebrate CNY with DIY Dumplings.” They explained that this is typically a time spent with family, but since we are at school and can’t be at home, the club planned an event to spend time together and celebrate the holiday.

At the event, there were some pre-made dumplings and iced tea for attendees to enjoy. The flavors of the dumplings were veggie, pork and cabbage, which were delicious and well worth the walk to the ICC. It was nice to have some non-dining hall food for a change. 

Members of TSA also taught those who attended the event how to make their own dumplings. There were pre-made chicken and veggie fillings that were used to make the dumplings, but participants learned how to fill and fold the dumplings. It was certainly harder than I expected, but it was also really fun to try. I kept putting either too much or too little filling inside of my dumplings and the shapes of mine were a bit strange, so I guess I could use more practice. 

Not knowing what to expect, Altana Schweitzer ’23 went to the event because a friend invited her. “[The event] seemed like a fun way to connect with people and enjoy some delicious food together,” Schweitzer told the Justice.

Schweitzer said that she enjoyed having the opportunity to make her own dumplings. This was the first time that she had done something like this. When discussing the “make your own dumpling” station, she said, “I thought it was a really cool way to get people involved with the new year’s celebration by having this traditional way of engaging with the event. Beyond eating the dumplings that [TSA] had made themselves, I thought it was really cool because we got to experience what people actually do on this holiday at home.”

I really enjoyed this event because it gave me the opportunity to learn about and experience a culture different from my own. It is wonderful that members of the Brandeis community who come from a variety of cultures can host events for the whole campus to learn more about their traditions. I haven’t participated in many events like this so far during my time at Brandeis, but I hope to attend more in the future. I had an amazing time simply hanging out with friends in a fun and relaxed setting. Unfortunately, I had to leave the event a little early, but I still had a lot of fun participating. 

And I am not the only one who felt this way. This event also inspired Schweitzer to go to more events like this. She said, “I think this was my first event in the cultural sector of the clubs. I actually really, really enjoyed it and I think I will definitely have to go back for some upcoming cultural events.”