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Asian Faculty and Staff Network socialize and celebrate different cultures at CSUB

By Karin Patiño


 The Asian Faculty and Staff Network met Thursday, Aug. 31 in the Dezember Reading Room at CSU Bakersfield for the Affinity Groups Welcome Back Socials to discuss their goals for the year. 

  Students, staff and faculty met on Thursday afternoon to reconnect with one another and discuss as a group what goals they wish to achieve for the upcoming school year and how they plan to achieve those goals. 

  “The Affinity Groups idea was for new people on campus to see this [CSUB] is a place that celebrates different cultures. We hope to see more study abroad and get foreign exchange students more involved,” said Jenny Zorn, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, at the beginning of the meeting.

    Following Zorn was Dean Mark Novak who encouraged faculty to bring different cultures into their curriculum for no matter what field of study they may be teaching. 

  Novak also mentioned to the crowd that CSUB has 17 study abroad students this year. 

 This is the second year for the Asian Faculty and Staff Network after their inauguration last school year. 

  The AFSN went full-steam ahead for their first year last year. 

  However, the Asian Faculty and Staff Network has different plans in mind for the upcoming months. 

  In regards to last year, Kris Krishnan, Institutional Research, Planning and Assessment assistant vice president and co-chair of Asian Faculty and Staff Network said to everyone, “We will not focus on so many activities [like last year]. We are going to have fun.” 

 Students, faculty and staff participated in a Pin My Country Social in which everyone who attended tacked a pin onto a world map that was placed upon a cork board, indicating where they are originally from or where their heritage comes from and shared a few words about their home country.

   Just some of the countries mentioned covered grounds across the whole map and those countries included China, India, Nigeria, Mexico, Croatia and Canada, showing the diversity of students, staff and faculty on campus.  

  “I really enjoyed the fact that they involved everyone socially and culturally,” said Josue Cruz, 21, business and administration major and president of the Japan and Beyond Club. 

  Later on during the social, to learn more about Asian culture, Junying Mao, programmer in the Information Technology department at CSUB, created an Asian Faculty and Staff Network 2017 Jeopardy Game Show, where staff, faculty and students grouped into three teams to showcase their knowledge of Asian culture. 

  The categories created for the Jeapordy game were: Famous Person, Food, Landmarks and Language. 

  Teams were awarded candy traditionally found from Asian countries for every question they answered correctly. 

  The stakes were high. 

  Not too far from now, CSUB will take part in celebrating the Diwali Festival of Lights occurring in mid-October. 

  The exact date on when CSUB will hold its celebrations is to be announced soon. 

  Krishnan said, “Diwali is a Hindu festival of lights, celebrating the conquest of good over evil and to bring light in the world.”   

  The celebration will be open to the community here at CSUB. 

  For more information, contact Asian Faculty and Staff Network co-chairs Charlene Hu at or Kris Krishnan at