Diplomat Updates

The White City: Experiences at the Corso de la Amistad

Our International Student Diplomat Gabby Vargas took at little bit of WKU home with her this summer to the festival called the “Corso de la Amistad” in Arequipa, Peru. Read more to hear from Gabby about her experience.

My name is Gabriela, and I am a current student at Western Kentucky University and an International Student Diplomat.

I was born in Arequipa which is called “The White City” of Peru. This is because of its architectural monuments built with a white volcanic rock called sillar.

Arequipa people are proud of having been born in the skirts of volcanoes where the sillar came from. They honor this with a big celebration. 

On August 15 of each year, Arequipeños  and tourists from all around the world arrive to Arequipa to celebrate its anniversary. 

The “Corso de la Amistad” is the central activity of Arequipa’s anniversary. It is a festivity full of color and joy, where the various institutions and people pay homage to the city with the presentation of traditional dances, like “Montonero Arequipeño”. This dance represents the joy and celebration of the villagers, the “montoneros,” after the war finished and they can finally return home.

I had the honor of moving WKU’s red flag next to Arequipa’s and Peru’s flag. And, as the “Montoneros”, I am excited and honored to represent my country far away from home.  

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