The Student Government Association and International Student Organization brought over 400 people to the inaugural Fall Feast, and the rest of the SEC took note.
Auburn's SGA executive officers received the SEC SGA Event of the Year at the 2019 SEC Exchange. The annual conference brings together the student governments of all 14 SEC schools to exchange ideas and experiences.
"SEC Exchange was an excellent opportunity to learn from peer institutions and celebrate our collective impact on students within our region," said SGA President Mary Margaret Turton. "We are immensely proud of the Fall Feast's recognition, and we're thankful to ISO's partnership in this inaugural event."
Fall Feast was designed to give students who couldn't go home for the Thanksgiving break a chance to celebrate the holiday. It was also intended to bridge the gap between domestic and international students.
With the help of Tiger Catering, SGA and ISO worked to ensure all dietary needs were met for a traditional-style Thanksgiving meal. Some of the international student organizations also put on performances at the event.
Turton said the event showed SGA's commitment to all students during all times of the year.
Sumaiya Islam, former ISO president, was approached about the idea. She thought it was a great idea because it isn't logistically possible for many international students to go home for the week of Thanksgiving break, which can feel isolating.
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"I know what that feels like because I've stayed on campus during Thanksgiving break, and it's really nice to have something to look forward to," Islam said.
Fall Feast was a great way to carry out ISO's mission of bringing international students to American culture and vice versa, Islam added.
Julianne Lyn, current EVP of initiatives and AVP of outreach projects at the time of Fall Feast, said the event was one of the most visible expressions of SGA's goal of serving students during a time when many students feel isolated.
"As SGA, it is our mission to serve and promote the individual student and unify all that is Auburn." Lyn said. "The Fall Feast truly unified every student on campus, exemplifying the core of who we are as the Auburn Family."
SGA and ISO will hold Fall Feast again this year and will have details about the event early this fall.
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