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K-State Today

April 3, 2012

K-State showcases diversity with annual International Week

Submitted by Communications and Marketing

Kansas State University will celebrate its more than 1,800 international students and the diversity they bring to campus during International Week, April 7-15.

This year's theme is "International Education for Global Inspiration." International Week is an annual universitywide event that focuses specifically on the university's international diversity. In fall 2011 the number of international students grew to 1,856 -- a nearly 40 percent increase from the 2009-2010 academic year. The top five countries represented at the university are China, India, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Kuwait. Additionally, almost 600 American students at the university study abroad each semester, while hundreds of international faculty, scholars and researchers come to the university to study each year, including 350 in 2010-2011.

International Week is sponsored by the university's International Coordinating Council. Activities provide the campus with the opportunity to learn about traditions, activities and favorite foods from countries around the world.

Interest in International Week has been growing along with the diversity of the university, according to Obair Siddiqui, master's student in industrial engineering, Bahrain, and president of the International Coordinating Council

"More and more people in our community are becoming aware of the importance of cultural exchange and understanding, and they are taking steps to understand one another's culture and heritage through the plethora of events we put on throughout the week," Siddiqui said.

International Week events, all free and open to the public, include:

Saturday, April 7

* International Week 2012 will kick off with International Parade and Game Day from 2-6 p.m. on the Bosco Plaza. The event features games from all over the world, including the new International Scavenger Hunt, which will take place throughout campus.

Monday, April 9

* The whole family can try international dance lessons from 4:30-6:30 p.m. in the courtyard of the K-State Student Union. This event will feature performances and lessons by dancers from all over the world.

* The K-State French Club will present an international film, "White Material," at 7 p.m. in the Union's Little Theater.

Tuesday, April 10

* The International Coordinating Commission will present an international fashion show, in collaboration with the World Friendship Organization, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. in Forum Hall at the Union. International models will showcase traditional clothing from their native countries.

Wednesday, April 11

* An international panel discussion will be from 5:30-7:30 p.m. The panel's topic will be "International Education and World Peace: Compatible or Incompatible?" The panel will discuss how international education can affect international relations and influence public opinion and foreign policy. Panelists will include Kansas State University's April Mason, provost and senior vice president; Marcelo Sabetes, interim associate provost of international programs; and Jim Sherow professor of history and mayor of Manhattan. Also on the panel will be Toyin Falola, professor at the University of Texax, Austin, and Rick Roberts, a former U.S. diplomat. Refreshments and snacks will be served.

Friday, April 13

* An international cultural exhibition will be from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. in the Union courtyard. The exhibition will feature exhibits and performances by various international students. Refreshments and snacks will be served.

* A coffee hour on Thailand will be at 4 p.m. at the International Student Center. A student from Thailand will be the host and will give participants a perspective on the country from a native. A Thai New Year's celebration will follow at 5 p.m., with traditional Thai snacks to be served.

Saturday, April 14

* International Dance Night will be at Johnny Kaw's in Aggieville from 8-11 p.m. This event is a prom night for international students. An in-house disc jockey will play music from around the world. Refreshments will be served.

Sunday, April 15

* An International Talent Show will be from 4- 6:30 p.m. in Forum Hall at the Union. International students will perform various musical, dance or literary pieces from their home countries. Refreshments and snacks will be served. This event will also double as the closing ceremony for International Week 2012.

Along with the International Coordinating Council, International Week sponsors include the Union Program Council, Student Governing Association, Friends of International Programs and office of graduate studies in the College of Education.