The 25th Students of Color Conference: An Interview


Last week, the 25th Annual Students of Color Conference (SoCC), which was sponsored by the Washington State Multicultural Student Services’ Director Council (MSSDC), took place in Yakima, WA. From April 23 to April 25, over 800 students from 33 technical and community colleges across Washington state gathered to celebrate their personal identities, nurture leadership, discuss social issues, and work towards intercultural understanding. The conference consisted of various workshops that students could freely attend based on their interests, and outside of the workshop rooms they were able to connect with each other and build friendships.


Among eleven students that represented Cascadia College, Atha Lia was one of our international students that attended the conference. She is an international student from Indonesia. We’ve successfully reached her for comments about her experiences and the impact the conference made on her.

Q: What made you interested to participate in the Students of Color Conference?

Untitled-1A: Student Color Conference was a great opportunity for college students to gain new experiences in learning new things and to make new friends from other countries around the world. I also think that it would be good for my resume as well, as I am currently planning to apply for a job in Cascadia.

Q: Before you went, what did you expect from the Students of Color Conference?
A: I expected to gain new [information] about things that I haven’t understood and known before.

Q: Which workshop interested you the most and what did you learn from it?
A: For me, the most interesting workshop that I had was the last one, which was called “Me, Myself, and I”. It reflected [ourselves] as [women], who [have] not always been respected by other gender. This workshop helped me understand how I have to see myself as part of a woman, who is strong and totally [has] the ability to be as [good] as the others, especially men. It also encouraged me to never give up, even when I am in the hardest time of my life. “We shared, we cared”, was what basically this session was trying to say.

Q: What was the best thing that you experienced at the conference?

A: What I loved the most of being part of a student who went to this conference was that I had the chance to learn [other] things, such as [other] cultures [of] which most were [totally] different from the country where I lived back then. I learned how things which are basically “illegal” in my country, are allowed here, and people definitely would not judge you as being “different”.

Q: How this conference make you a better student?

A: This conference opens my sight of view about this world. It is not [still] the same “me” when I walked out from that place. The things that I have never known before, the things that I totally haven’t ever noticed, were shown as I joined the sessions. I used to be ‘unnoticeable’ before. But since I joined this conference, it made me more open to everyone. I also felt the change in my social life. Before, I often felt shy and embarrassed when it came to discussion and gave opinions. But now, I feel more comfortable to talk in front of people.

Q: How will you encourage Cascadia international students to participate in the conference next year?

A: I would like to tell other international students about my experiences at the Students of Color Conference, since it is a good opportunity which they should not miss!

Would you like to learn more what other international students have to say about the SoCC? Join us at the panel discussion on Tuesday, May 5, 2015 from 1:15 pm to 2:30 pm in Mobius Hall! This is your chance to ask questions directly to the students who participated in the conference. We’ll see you there!

Images are courtesy of Lea Hakim.

EDIT: The last question and answer were added on 05/01/2015 at 4:14 PM.


Quarterly Activity: Skagit Valley Tulip Festival & Seattle Premium Outlets

Spring has sprung! Every year, the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival is held once a year to celebrate the coming of Spring in the Pacific Northwest, around 50 miles north of Cascadia College. It’s a very famous tourist destination where people can see rows and rows of tulips bloom. The tulips bloomed early in Washington this year, so we took our students to the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival right after Spring quarter started last week before all of the tulips were gone!


Yuki and Chisato, both from Japan, were two of over 40 students that went to the Festival with us. This was Yuki’s first time in America, and she was really excited to go see the tulips. “I’ve seen tulips before, but not these many.” she said. “They’re beautiful.”

“There’s a tulip festival called Huis Ten Bosch Tulip Festival in Nagasaki (Japan), but I’ve never been there.” said Chisato.


Before we went back home, we took our students to Seattle Premium Outlets, where they could shop branded items for a very low price. “Ralph Lauren is a lot cheaper here, it’s 45% off.” said Chisato. “The trip was fun, but I wish we had more time shopping.” Yuki added.

Our next trip will be the baseball match between the Seattle Mariners and the Boston Red Sox at Safeco Field! Sign up right away to save your spot!

iConnect Weekly: Experience Music Project Museum Tour


JUST IN: Report from the last iConnect Activity of the quarter! Our iConnector Livia and three other students just got back from her Experience Music Project (EMP) Museum tour and brought us some really pretty pictures that we couldn’t resist to share! EMP Museum is a museum dedicated to temporary popular culture located next to Space Needle. If you’ve gone to Space Needle before, EMP Museum is the big, metallic purple building!

As Livia reports:

We explored Nintendo Indie Game Revolution [exhibition], which had a lot of fun games! Next we went to the Jimi Hendrix exhibition, where we got to learn about his life and music and where his guitars and costumes were displayed. We went briefly to the Nirvana section (did you know that Nirvana was formed in Aberdeen, Washington?) before going to the Sound Lab, where we spent most of our time jamming.

The last one is the Fantasy Exhibition. There were a lot of displays from various pop culture such as dragons from Game of Thrones and the Invisibility Cloak from Harry Potter. In the light of Leonard Nimoy’s death aka Spock from the Star Trek franchise, the EMP Museum put up his costume in his tribute.



The Sound Lab was probably the most interesting part of the Museum, as told by our friends Willy, Olivia, and our iConnector Lea. “[It was the] best A Thousand Miles keyboard session I’ve ever had!” said Lea.

“More people should’ve come, especially with the ticket deal.” said Olivia. Students who went on this tour paid $10, while it normally costs $21 to get into the Museum.

Livia will be leaving this quarter as she will be graduating, so this tour is her last! But worry not, we will continue to provide more fun tours for you guys next quarter. Stay tuned!


Quarterly Activity: Theo Chocolate Factory Tour and Ice Skating


We’re getting close to the end of the Winter quarter! To end it on a high note, International Programs took our students ice skating for the last time this Winter and toured Theo Chocolate Factory, a chocolatier based in Seattle.

Theo Chocolate Factory is located in Fremont neighborhood of Seattle. Students took a peek inside the chocolate factory and see how cocoa beans were processed into delicious bars of chocolate. Throughout the tour, they were allowed to take small samples of Theo Chocolate of different flavors, and at the end of it, each of them received a free Theo Chocolate bar!

“I thought it was really cool to see the inside of the factory and taste the chocolate,” Olivia—one of the students who went on the tour—said. “[It’s] a good price for the tour and the free chocolate.”

Everyone agreed that they learned a lot new things about the factory. Elissa who went on the tour said, “I love hearing the names for the machines [that are used to process the cocoa beans].” The students then proceed to purchase additional Theo Chocolate bars before going to the ice rink.



And that’s it for our Winter Activities! If you missed our Quarterly Activities this quarter, look out for our new Quarterly Activities for Spring quarter on this blog! We’ll see you next quarter and have a great spring break!

Quarterly Activity: Chinese New Year Dinner at Facing East


It’s the Year of the Sheep! Chinese New Year, or Lunar New Year, is celebrated worldwide to mark the turn of the Chinese calendar, with each year celebrating a different animal zodiac. Chinese New Year this year will actually be celebrated on January 17, but International Programs celebrated Chinese New Year early by taking our students for dinner at Facing East, a Taiwanese restaurant located in Bellevue on Wednesday, February 11, 2014.

Our friends Ivan, Fransisca, Livia, and Fifi, all from Indonesia, were few of the ones who attended the event. 3-4% of Indonesian population is Chinese-Indonesian; Livia and Fifi, who celebrate Chinese New Year regularly said the event reminded them of home. Everyone else agreed that the food served there was delicious. “The Taiwanese pork burger was the best.” commented Ivan. Another dish that they ate included spiced pork over rice, which they also said “especially great” and they concluded the meal with shaved ice as dessert. After the meal, all the student received hongbao (a red envelope given on Chinese New Year) filled with milk candies and chocolate coins.


Don’t forget we still have one more big event this quarter! Sign up for a tour to Theo Chocolate Factory and ice skating!

Images courtesy of Ivan Ardihernawan.

Quarterly Activity: A Trip to Leavenworth


Do you notice lately that the day is getting longer and the weather is getting warmer? Is winter over? Not in Leavenworth! It hardly ever snows in Bothell, but our students had plenty of fun in the snow in Leavenworth on Saturday, January 31, 2015. Leavenworth is a small town located in Washington, mostly known as a German town. A lot of students tried snow tubing for the first time, a winter activity where you get on a plastic donut and slide from the top of a snowy hill. Afterwards, the students got to explore Downtown Leavenworth and marvel at the beauty of Bavarian architecture. See more pictures on our Facebook photo album!


Our iConnector Lea has successfully reached Bill from Taiwan and Mozzi from China who went on the trip last week for comments. Was snow tubing scary? “It was so fun!” said Mozzi. Bill thinks it was “okay [and] not scary”. We don’t get a lot of snow in Bothell, so our Abigail, Katy, and Anthony used this opportunity to start a snowball fight. Other students went to Cocoa Cabin and took a sip of hot cocoa with marshmallows to warm themselves up.



The trip ended with a visit to Downtown Leavenworth to eat at München Haus—a Bavarian grill. “There are lots of interesting stores selling very unique souvenirs. We also have the German food, like the sausage. All in all, it’s a great trip.” said Mozzi.

Bill and Mozzi recommended this activity to you all! Missed the opportunity? Take a tour to a chocolate factory and go ice skating with us instead!

Community Life: Arena Soccer Party


Last Friday was Soccer Arena Party! This event was organized by our iConnector Martin, which took place at Woodinville Indoor Soccer on Friday, January 23, 2015. Martin came up with the idea of organizing this soccer party after hearing comments about the lack of soccer activity on our campus. Ten students, including domestic and international students from Cascadia (plus one non-Cascadia student), attended the event. We can see on the picture that some students went all out for the game and wore their very own Kodiaks soccer uniform!

When reached out by Martin, Ivan and Ronal—both from Indonesia—said that they had fun participating in the event. Ivan said, “It was fun, the pizza was good, and my favorite part was playing ‘5 vs. 5’. It was interesting to play on a field with walls [an arena], it was like a real street futbol!” He also mentioned that playing at Woodinville Indoor Soccer was great because it was close to campus.

“It was a good game and good way to meet new friends. The ‘2 vs. 2’ game where we all played against each other.” said Ronal. “I would definitely like to do this again. We are going to do this again, right?”

Are you going to participate in the next Arena Soccer Party? Make sure not to miss the next one!

Flashback Friday: MLK Day of Service 2015


Every year, Americans celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on the third day of January to remember his contribution to the African-American Civil Rights Movement. On this day, Americans would participate in various volunteering event to celebrate. This year, our students participated in MLK Day of Service 2015 held by Cascadia College and University of Washington-Bothell on Saturday, January 17, 2015. Students got to volunteer to clean up parks, sort out donated items, write letters to the veterans, and more.

We’ve reached out to our iConnector Lina Shih and our students Kenny, and Vicky—all from Taiwan—for comments on the event. Lina and Kenny helped out at YMCA Northshore cleaning up children playground area and parking lot. Vicky did a different thing and went to Canyon Park Jr. High School to participate in Threads and Treads where she sorted out mens’ pants and paired clothes to make fashionable outfits out of them.

Our three friends agreed that the most interesting part of the day was the keynote speech. They learned what Martin Luther King, Jr. did to the American people and learned that they could also contribute. “People should do more community services.” said Vicky.

When asked if Lina would recommend other students to participate in MLK Day of Service next year, she said, “I will definitely encouraged other students to do it because it’s a way to [be] involve[d] in the community.”

We hope to see you at MLK Day of Service 2016, then!