International Week: Hellenic Club

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International Week: Hellenic Club

By Stephana Ocneanu, Staff Writer

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Editor’s Note: This is the first in a series of International Week stories about ethnic clubs to highlight the diversity of Niles West.

International Week: A time for West’s student and faculty to show off their cultural pride through meals, dances and decorations lining the halls. Among the many diverse clubs showcasing their culture this week is Hellenic Club — otherwise known as Greek Club. With the unfortunate news that Greek Club would not be included in International Night’s presentation of dances, the members made the best out of the situation by maintaining their cultural pride throughout the week. From all things gyros to freshly baked spanakopita to traditional frappé coffee, the club worked together to prepare a delicious array of foods for the International Feast.

As the club worked tirelessly during the weeks leading up to International Week, the members became closer than ever. From Freshmen to Seniors, each Greek Club member leaned on one another to successfully show of their culture at the International Feast. Despite not being able to dance this year because of timing issues, senior Sofia Stefanis appreciated how much Hellenic Club offered her over the past four years.

“Joining Greek club really helped me Freshman year and on through senior year because I was able to meet new people of my own ethnicity who also love the culture. At my Feeder school no one in my grade was Greek so it was nice to come to West and have people who could understand the Greek struggles and offer support,” Stefanis said.

When they’re not making gyros sandwiches, listening to Greek music or discussing cultural current events, Hellenic Club is usually planning bigger events in the Chicago land community as well.

“We’re really trying to get involved with the Greek community downtown. One thing they do every year for Independence Day is put on a parade that all the Greek communities are invited to so we’re really excited and hopeful that we will be a part of that this year,” sponsor Joanna Kastrinakis said.

Because of the immense diversity at West, joining a cultural club is a fun and easy way to meet people from your own community.

“Not only do you get to show your pride of being Greek, but you also develop a second family. You get to know other people who are both younger and older than you who are all from the same culture,” freshman Dina Limperetos said.

Hellenic Club meets on Wednesdays after school in room 1220.