Kazakh students get a taste of home

Yulia Vasilyeva, Contributor

Here, in the United States, Kazakh students celebrate their country holidays the same way they do at home or even better. The 20th anniversary of the independence of Kazakhstan celebration on Nov. 3 was the biggest event created by Kazakh Student Association (KSA) at State College and hosted by Kazakh-Russian Society in Pittsburgh (KRSP) members.

Around 150 guests from Kazakhstan, Russia, United States and many other countries came to the Alumni Hall on Penn State’s campus to celebrate.  The main event of the night was a concert that grabbed the attendees’ attention.

Penn State also surprised the guests with a wide range of free national food, Kazakhstan souvenirs and an opportunity to take a picture wearing national costumes or accessories.

According to Ilya Skripin, KSA member and Penn State student from Temirtau, Kazakhstan, the most interesting parts of the concert were the fighting-for-independence, the presentation on a brief history of Kazakhstan and the “Who Wants to be a Millionaire” game.

“The concert and the event itself were fantastic,” said Skripin. “There were a lot of guests from different universities.”

“Our trip to Penn State was like going home,” said KRSP member and junior at Robert Morris Almira Mekezhanova from Almaty, Kazakhstan. “It felt so good being among people from the same country. Joy and excitement increased even higher when they served Kazakh national food.”

Mekezhanova is not the only one who mentioned the food and home atmosphere at the event.

“At the end, there was a Kazakhstani buffet and it was the best food I had in the past six month,” said KRSP member and RMU student Aigera Tungyshbayeva from Almaty, Kazakhstan. “To me it was a very exciting experience and, for a moment, I felt like I was back home.”