Cantonese student creates club in hopes of spreading his cultural background to others


Chee cheong fun, also known as long rice noodle rolls, is a popular Cantonese dish that can be eaten plain or with fillings such as shrimp, barbecue pork, or vegetables. This would be among the Cantonese style food items the Cantonese Club would be talking about besides watching films spoken in Cantonese with English subtitles. Image used with permission from Aiden Wong.

Though sophomore Aiden Wong got his Cantonese Club approved by the ASB, he’s still working on recruiting members.

“I wanted to start the club because I felt like not many people knew about the Cantonese language and culture,” Wong said.

According to travel guide China Highlights, Cantonese is one of the many minority Chinese dialects, mainly spoken in Hong Kong, Macau and Guangzhou.

“A lot of people know about Hong Kong but don’t realize that a completely different dialect is spoken there,” Wong said.

Mandarin is the official language in China, and Sunny Hills offers Chinese language classes for Mandarin but not Cantonese.

“Cantonese is different because most people associate being Chinese as speaking Mandarin, and I want to deviate from that stereotype,” Wong said. “I want to open people’s eyes to other dialects and Cantonese is one of the most widely spoken ones.”

Sophomore Elisa Kho, a friend of Wong, had the same idea as Wong and also wanted to spread the Cantonese culture.

“I thought it was a good idea because Aidan and I were the only people that could speak Cantonese,” Kho said. “We thought that we could spread our culture of Hong Kong and the language to other people because it’s not well known and it’s a minority.”

Once the club gets going with more interested members, Wong plans on watching films in Cantonese, talking about Cantonese food and learning phrases, words and sentences that will help in everyday life.

Junior Alexis Nhan signed up for the Cantonese Club but isn’t yet a member.

“What interested me in the Cantonese Club was that I wanted to learn the culture since I’m partly Cantonese,” Nhan said.

Wong is currently in search of a new adviser or else the Cantonese Club will lose its club status.