Being involved in an association requires great dedication and commitment. For this reason, the Filipino American Association recognizes and celebrates its members’ achievements through its annual scholarship gala.
This year’s event took place Jan. 20 from 5-9 p.m. at the Student Union Auditorium and included the Enchanted Ball theme. About 300 students attended this gala.
There was a total of 17 different schools throughout the Midwest and Canada that appeared at the gala. Some of the schools that attended were the University of Michigan, Michigan State University, Purdue University and University of Wisconsin. The two Canadian schools included Ryerson University and York University from Toronto.
During the gala, the attendees watched a multitude of performances showcasing the singing and dancing abilities of their own members, as well as students from other organizations. Two members of the Filipino American Association were each granted a scholarship during the gala.
First-year pharmacy major Diana Chiem and first-year international business major Cynthia Stellhorn were both awarded this year’s scholarship.
“The purpose of [the] Gala is to showcase the skills of our members and to recognize general members who show their passion for the organization and potential for future leadership,” said fourth-year electrical engineering major Ralph Palad.
Palad has been a member of Filipino American Association since the spring semester of 2014. He is the current president of the FAA.
Before the scholarship winners were announced, the Filipino American Association had its performers take the stage.
“The organizations that performed besides FAA were EMU Kapamilya Club, UT Sigma Lambda Betas, UT African People’s Association, UT ISCO, headlined by our guests John Concepcion and Jessie Cabrera from Winnipeg, Canada,” Palad said.
Besides the performances and the scholarship ceremony, food was also served during intermission. The MC video and skits also fit with this year's theme of Enchanted Ball.
“My favorite part of Gala is the food and performing with FAA Modern – which is a hip-hop dance group I am a member of,” said second-year biology major Grace Garcia.
Garcia is the secretary of FAA, and she has been a part of the association since her first year at UT.
While the FAA gala rewarded members for their hard work and dedication, it also brought organizations across the Midwest together and celebrated their culture.