A night of traditional celebration, food and lots of fun.

We understand that it’s not always easy to study abroad. Aside from leaving your friends, family, and familiar surroundings, you miss out on important events. I am quite familiar with it; I’m an international student from Vietnam. Along with some Asian countries, we also celebrate the Lunar New Year.

So, I was excited to know that the Vietnamese Student Association (VSA) was hosting a Lunar New Year celebration called “Tet On The Dragon.” For me, this was an opportunity to honour this special occasion, while having some fun. This is how it went!

The cozy and nostalgic atmosphere

a group of people in the room celebrating Lunar New Year

VIA Humber VSA

During my time in Canada, I have never heard so many people speaking Vietnamese in one place before. Since I come from the northern part of Vietnam, the room’s waning light had a nostalgic feeling that reminded me of my hometown.

a man hanging up a branch of yellow blossoms

VIA Humber VSA

I also enjoyed the dedication to making every detail relevant. Especially in how they tried to replicate the way we decorate our houses for the new year. From the red couplets to the yellow blossoms, everything was so on point.

Lunar New Year blessings

VIA Humber VSA

As part of the Lunar New Year, we did some traditional activities like playing Bau Cua Tom Ca, fortune telling, and so many more. My favourite one was definitely writing wishes. It was great to see what people wanted to achieve and were working toward achieving.

The fun parts

a man reading questions on the srcreen

VIA Humber VSA

After everyone had settled down, we headed into the first activity of the event. It was called Ring The Golden Bell, a Vietnamese version of Kahoot! but we would be divided into groups. And just like Kahoot, everyone was so competitive.

a man holding a white board

VIA Humber VSA

To add some excitement, we were restricted to using only boards and markers. Having a set of over 20 questions about Vietnamese New Year traditions made it quite challenging at first. Why? Being away from home for five years was one aspect, but also realizing there were some facts I wasn’t aware of added to the challenge. However, it turned out to be a rewarding experience, as it provided an opportunity to learn more about my heritage.

a man holding Chung cake beside a man who is laughing

VIA Humber VSA

Another activity that I enjoyed was DIY Chung Cake, our traditional dish that consists of pork belly, mung beans, and glutinous rice. In this activity, we got crafty by decorating our own Chung Cake with colorful papers. Although all of us were strangers, everybody worked together so well that each item was a touch of both cultural identity and personal character.

a group of people cutting and crafting the traditional dish of Lunar New Year

VIA Humber VSA

Shake things up with music

a singer performing in the room full of people

VIA Humber VSA

During the event, the club also invited a singer to perform. The singer’s voice, a dynamic blend of soulful melodies and powerful highs, effortlessly captivated every ear in the room. I found out later that she was also an alumni of Humber College, which was super surprising and interesting.

two girls holding phone with flashlight

VIA Humber VSA

Wrapping up the experience

a cute girl holding red envelopes in Lunar New Year

VIA Humber VSA

As guests, each of us received a signature envelope to bring home. When it comes to freebies, you can’t miss it.

The event ended in a wild round of applause and cheers. Everyone had something to take away after the night. Some made new friends; some got their stomachs stuffed with boba teas and food. For me, what I remember the most was probably this experience. The feeling of getting back into the groove is something I have not had for a while. This event truly made me happy despite the frigid weather in Canada on this special Lunar New Year.

What are your most memorable clubs’ events?

IGNITE Club Fair


Engaging on campus is one of the things you should do to make the best of your post-secondary experience. You don’t have to work on campus to be involved; it can be as simple as attending a club’s event like I did. And who knows, maybe that one event or club you have can make a significant impact on your career in the future.

Featured image via Vietnamese Student Association (VSA).

Wondering how starting a club can help you? Discover tips on how being a leader sets you up for future success

Follow us on FacebookInstagram and Tik Tok for all things student life.