In celebration of the diverse yet unified cultures of the Arab world, Abu Dhabi University (ADU) hosted ‘The Shami & Iraqi Week’ which ended on 6th January at its Khalifa City campus. As part of a series of cultural weeks commemorating ADU’s multi-cultural spirit, this week showcased a number of dazzling cultural displays, as well as various art forms depicting life in five prominent Arab nations.
Student clubs representing Palestine, Syria, Jordan, Iraq and Lebanon participated in the festivities of the Shami & Iraqi Week, putting up traditional exhibitions and displaying beautiful handicrafts and other creative artefacts. Along with the colourful exhibits were daylong entertainment programs of poetry recitations, comedic sketches, a number of music and dance performances and short films illustrating socio-political and cultural values and lifestyles of the people in each country.
Ambassadors, representatives and other officials from the respective embassies graced the closing act, including Dr. Basheer Qaddourah, Minister Plenipotentiary, Syrian Embassy; Maisaa Harb, Cultural Attache, Palestinian Embassy; Saber Ibrahim Shokor, Lebanese Embassy representative; Majdi Attari, Secretary of the Palestinian Social Committee; and Marwan Al Tabari, President of the Palestinian Business Council. ADU Chancellor, Dr. Nabil Ibrahim honoured and welcomed the presence of the guests.
Dr. Ibrahim explained that, “At Abu Dhabi University, we understand the importance of recognising and acknowledging not only the diversity of our student population, but also the cultural mix prevalent all over the UAE. Our culture week series is about celebrating this diversity and the uniqueness of each culture, which further enables us to create a unified identity for all Arab peoples.”
The Shami & Iraqi Week presented an excellent opportunity for students to showcase their various talents, and rejoice in the uniqueness of their nations and cultures. The celebration uplifted the spirits of all present, and spread the message of mutual respect and Arab unity.
ADU’s Culture Weeks series draws to a close with a clear message for students about the institution’s openness to a multicultural society and its determination in catering to all students alike, irrespective of their backgrounds, races and nationalities. Furthermore, ADU encourages all members of the UAE Academic community to take steps towards adopting the same sentiment and towards building a tolerant community.