Student marches in Christmas parade

Angela Chon

Max Cho ’15 marched in the Hollywood Christmas Parade Dec. 1 for the fourth year in a row.

He has been a member of the Pacific American Volunteer Association, a non-profit organization where students participate in various community service activities, for four years and was recently appointed Junior National President. Every year, PAVA members organize a cultural marching band that plays traditional Korean music at various events.

The performers, dressed in traditional Korean attire, either played an instrument or danced in the parade.

Some members walked behind the performers, holding flags.

“The Hollywood Parade has really become a PAVA tradition,” Cho said. “For the past few years that I’ve performed, I played various different traditional Korean instruments.”

PAVA worked closely with Mayor Eric Garcetti ’88, who got PAVA a spot in the parade. The band consisted of over 220 elementary, middle and high school students from 14 different school districts in the state. Members gathered every Saturday for four months at Glendale Community College to rehearse around the football field.

“Preparation is always fun,” Cho said. “The fact that you get to meet various kids from all over California, all committed to represent their Korean culture, is always an energizing experience.”

Cho was proud to be one of the leaders of the band.

“I felt proud that we were all together that night celebrating an American tradition by performing a traditional Korean art form,” Cho said. “Through four years, I’ve become exposed to my Korean culture, and I can say I’m proud of who I’ve become throughout the process.”