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Campus & Community

A Yam Good Time

Terps Enjoy Turkey, Crab Cakes, Korean Pancakes at Thanksgiving Meals Across Campus

By Karen Shih ’09 and Maggie Haslam

students fill plates at Thanksgiving gathering

Terps tuck in to a holiday feast during the School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation’s second Gratitude Day, one of many Thanksgiving gatherings held on campus during this holiday season.

Photo by Jelena Dakovic

Graduate student Salma Haoudi, who arrived from North Africa in August, knew to expect turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes at her first Thanksgiving meal—but cranberry sauce was a revelation.

“We don’t have cranberries in Morocco,” said Haoudi, who is studying urban planning. “It was just so delicious. You could feel the love of the people who made it.”

That warmth and welcome was the goal of the School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation’s second Gratitude Day last Wednesday, which featured a feast for 150 people of Thanksgiving staples mixed with potluck items like Czech red cabbage and Colombian flan. It’s one of many holiday gatherings taking place at the University of Maryland over the past week, offering students, especially those from out of state or other countries, the opportunity to partake in a quintessentially American tradition.

woman holds platter of cupcakes decorated like turkeys
Photo courtesy of Kelsey Prima

Today at noon, for example, the Department of Family Science in the School of Public Health is hosting a graduate student meal, coordinated by Tanner Kilpatrick, assistant clinical professor and the department's director of graduate studies.

"After two years of virtual and canceled events, it is important to reunite in person for personal connections," said Kilpatrick, who has also invited several students to his home for dinner on Thursday. "The weight of the semester is really heavy around this time, so the hope is that having this time together will be relaxing going into the holiday break."

In Athletics, Maryland Made’s Worldwide Terps program hosted its inaugural Thanksgiving meal for international students last night, a catered dinner with traditional items as well as Maryland crab cakes. And last week, Education Abroad organized its annual potluck, featuring spanakopita from Greece, potato and egg omelets from Spain, shrimp and spring onion pancakes from Korea and more. Though a mishap kept them from providing a turkey main course this year, Kelsey Prima, program manager for academic exchanges and systems, made chocolate cupcakes that look like turkeys to keep the spirit of the holiday alive.

"Our international students get a chance to reconnect again, and we get to share our American traditions—like deep frying turkey!" said Prima. 

Students playing games with their hands while standing
Student athletes play games before the Worldwide Terps dinner. (Photo by MacKenzie Miles)

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