Students from across the world have helped to welcome in the lunar new year at the University of Huddersfield.

The university’s Chinese, Vietnamese and Malaysian societies laid on a series of events over the 1st and 2nd February that brought a diverse range of students together over food, music, art, costumes and dance to bring in the Year of the Tiger.

The Vietnamese society marked the start of the Tet celebrations with traditional games, dancing and cultural performances while sharing costumes and the country’s cuisine with students and staff in the Oastler Building.

That was followed a day later by the Spring Festival, which saw a traditional Lion Dance in Student Central, calligraphy lessons showing students how their names look in Mandarin, demonstrations of national dress from China and Malaysia, plus cookery and arts and crafts sessions.

The celebrations came to a close with the Chinese gala evening hosted by the Chinese Society, also held in the Oastler Building. Now into its second decade, the event saw students from the University give musical, dance and cultural performances alongside the Manchester Chinese Dance Academy and martial arts demonstrations from Jin Long.

The University’s Pro Vice-Chancellor for International Alistair Sambell said, “It was fantastic to see our campus buzzing again. A huge amount of hard work had clearly gone into organising such an enjoyable and uplifting event, the highlights for me being the performances from our very talented students.

“This Lunar New Year celebration really did feel like a new beginning as we move on from the recent lock downs.  The Year of the Tiger seems especially appropriate as it symbolises courage, bravery  and confidence, qualities our students have exhibited over the past two years in coping with the challenges while keeping going with such a positive attitude as shown in the celebrations and events held on campus.”

Giang Ha, President of the Vietnamese Society, added, “I am so happy that we had our Vietnamese Lunar New Year, Tet, and the Spring Festival Celebration so warmly welcomed by our Vietnamese, international friends and staff all over campus.

“Tet is one of the biggest occasions that we celebrate in Vietnam. Tet holds different tones of feelings in each of Vietnamese people, especially those who are far from home. Tet drops a slight feeling of homesickness in our heart, it inspires people to gather and say goodbye to 2021, and welcome a New Year with health, happiness, peace, and prosperity for 2022.

“For all of these reasons, the members in Vietsoc Huddersfield and I created an event for not only Vietnamese students but for everyone to come together. It makes the homesickness fade away a little bit, and fills the emptiness with a celebration far from home.”