Marymount Playing Key Role in One Journey Festival on June 2

Marymount University is playing a key role in the One Journey Festival, billed as the first national celebration of the talents, stories and contributions of refugees. The free festival will be held from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, June 2 on the grounds of the Washington National Cathedral.   

Not only is Marymount a sponsor, faculty members and students have volunteered their time and abilities to projects ranging from videotaping refugee narratives, hosting an ongoing art exhibit, creating a ceramic mural for the festival and helping with events throughout the day.
“On June 2, the coolest place to be in Washington, D.C. will be on the grounds of the Washington National Cathedral at the One Journey Festival,” said co-founder Wendy Chan. “In addition to music, dance, great food and good times, this is the place to engage with our neighbors from refugee communities, make friends and experience the many contributions this vibrant population brings to America.”
Among the day’s highlights:

  • Internationally known chef and humanitarian José Andrés will discuss the importance of food and culture.
  • Actor, model, and UN spokesperson Ger Duany will recount his story as one of the “lost boys” of Sudan.
  • The celebrated Pihcintu Multicultural Children’s Chorus of Portland, Maine, made up of refugee women and children, will perform a song written for the festival. Other refugee and immigrant music and dance groups will also perform.
  • The Kid’s Corner will feature henna, a make-a-kite station, calligraphy lessons taught by refugee families and more. Marymount fashion design and merchandising students will help lead these hands-on activities.
  • The global marketplace will offer wares and creations from refugees’ countries of origin.    

Marymount’s involvement began through a connection between Dr. Christina Clark, dean of its School of Arts and Sciences, and Chan. The pair met through Leadership Arlington, where both are members of the Class of 2018.
“We’re really excited to be part of the event,” Clark said. “It’s a perfect fit for Marymount and is in line with our values, mission and focus on enhancing student learning through service.”
She said it follows Marymount’s three pillars of intellectual curiosity, service to others and a global perspective. It also follows the charism of MU’s founding order, the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary, of ‘meeting the needs of our times,’ she added.
Chan said Marymount has been one of the event’s most active partners.
“We’re extremely grateful for their support,” she said.
Other Marymount efforts include:
— A ceramic mural was created for the festival by Assistant Professor of Fine Arts Joseph Hicks, alumna Jyotshna Herbert, an immigrant from Pakistan, and Njoud Alkharji, a 2018 graduate from Saudi Arabia.
— Students in Dr. Holly Karapetkova’s English Composition class have written stories of fellow students or family members who are immigrants and refugees. They will be featured on social media.
— Border (Untitled), a dual exhibition on the state of culture, art and politics surrounding immigration and refugees, is being held in conjunction with One Journey and is on display at Marymount’s two art galleries through July 28.

  • Cody Gallery at the Ballston Center, 1000 North Glebe Road, second floor, is open Thursday through Saturday, from 1 to 6 p.m. and by appointment. Admission is free.
  • Barry Gallery, located in the Reinsch Library at Marymount’s main campus, 2807 North Glebe Road, is open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Admission is free.    

The exhibition was organized by Meaghan Kent, director of Cody Gallery, Sarah Hardesty, assistant professor and director of Barry Gallery, and Hicks.
The Barry Gallery exhibition includes narratives from organizations aiding Syrian refugees, and refugees themselves, compiled by Associate Professor Barry Erdeljon and his students. Erdeljon’s students will also shoot video of the festival.
MU also hosted several pre-festival events, including a film and panel event on how to best tell refugee stories with the Environmental Film Festival. It also screened Human Flow, a film about the humanitarian crisis.
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