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This content was published: February 19, 2020. Phone numbers, email addresses, and other information may have changed.

PCC brings back cultureSEast to the Southeast Campus to explore identity

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Portland Community College is bringing back cultureSEast, which will run from March 3-5 at the Southeast Campus

The three-day series seeks to bridge identity, culture and community through storytelling, visual arts, workshops and conversations. The cultureSEast 2020 program will offer more than 15 events, all led by a wide range of student, staff, faculty, and community groups who have volunteered their time to facilitate dialogue and reflection around these themes. 

This year there is a strong emphasis on storytelling, using narratives and imagery as a way to lift up voices and to build community.

“Stories are such a powerful form of expression, and they are invisible threads that bind us together,” said Flamur Vehapi, a PCC student resource specialist with the Future Connect Scholarship Program. “If you really care about a person, ask them to tell you their story.”telling her story

Vehapi, who was recently profiled by PCC on his unique cultural background, helped launch the SE Storytelling Project. They hold monthly and themed events for the campus community to share tales that have impacted their lives. They also will be facilitating a storytelling session at cultureSEast about identity. 

One of the goals of cultureSEast is to make time and space for people to connect more deeply – both with their own identities and with the community. It is an opportunity to honor the rich diversity of perspectives and identities that make up our community and to encourage expression. 

“Our PCC Southeast Campus is fortunate to be located in such a talented, vibrant, emergent and culturally diverse community,” said Interim Campus President Jen Piper. “Through the cultureSEast series of events, we hope to continue to foster a climate of equity and inclusion, by highlighting, celebrating and creating awareness of the intersectionalities of race, culture and identity.” 

The Southeast Campus signature event was a product of a collaborative vision created by students, staff and faculty in 2015, and it continues to evolve. Each year the event is unique, as the programming is inspired, developed and led by the campus community. 

“This year, we will also explore the historical and current implications of marginalization, dehumanization and objectification, while valuing the opportunity to lift up the importance of education and equity,” Piper said. 

For more information, email ce-se-group@pcc.edu