The Western Carolina University community will have an opportunity to discover more about the university’s international student population, study-abroad opportunities, and global teaching and learning during this year’s International Education Week, set for Monday, Nov. 11, through Friday, Nov. 15.
International Education Week is a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Department of Education to celebrate the benefits of international education and worldwide exchange. Campus activities are organized through WCU’s Office of International Programs and Services. There are five events during the week that are marked as DegreePlus activities, focusing on the cultural responsiveness designation in particular and highlighted on the full schedule available at iew.wcu.edu.
WCU is currently home to 161 international students representing more than 40 countries. Country flags highlighting WCU’s international student population will be displayed on the second and third floor of the A.K. Hinds University Center for the full week.
IEW kicks off with information sessions spotlighting three ways students can go abroad – to study, intern or volunteer. Those sessions will be followed by a Study Abroad Student Panel, with study-abroad returnees reflecting on their experiences. Prospective study-abroad students are encouraged to come with questions. In addition, students will learn how to fund those experiences abroad by attending a Scholarships and Study Abroad Presentation on Wednesday, Nov. 13. Many scholarships are offered through WCU, as well as by notable national and international organizations.
On Tuesday, Nov. 12, and Thursday, Nov. 14, Campus Dining will be preparing traditional dishes of seven countries – China, Germany, Malaysia, Japan, Spain, Jamaica and Ireland. Also, faculty, staff and students are invited to join the International Catamount Club on Nov. 13 for a student presentation and traditional food from the United Kingdom.
WCU’s Japanese Program is hosting a two-part event, Japan Night-Beyond Borders, on Nov. 13. In honor of the World Food Day Campaign, organizers have arranged for participants to make onigiri (rice balls) together to help in the fight against hunger and support Table for Two Onigiri Action. Taketo Ohtani, who moved to the U.S. in 1960, will share details about his life in America with a focus on three major topics: college experience, companies and lessons learned.
The week’s activities also include a “Meet Us in Chongqing, China” information booth and a Chinese Education and Cultural Diversity Dialogue event hosted by the School of Teaching and Learning. International student interns from Southwest University in China said they are looking forward to sharing about their country and culture at both events.
WCU’s Intensive English Program closes out the week by hosting a Global Café. Members of the campus community are invited to stop by the University Center on Nov. 15 for samples of coffee, tea and treats from around the world and to engage in informal conversations with many international students.
WCU’s Division of Educational Outreach has donated two seats to its “Building Cultural Competency and Diversity Within Nonprofits” workshop that will be held on Thursday, Nov. 21, at WCU’s Biltmore Park site. Registration forms to enter a drawing for a seat at the workshop will be available following each IEW event. IPS will draw names Nov. 15 and winners will be notified by email.
Support for International Education Week is provided by WCU’s Division of Educational Outreach, Campus Dining, the Center for Career and Professional Development, DegreePlus, the Department of Campus Activities, School of Teaching and Learning, English Department, Japanese Program, Department of World Languages and Intensive English Program.
For more information about International Education Week events, go to iew.wcu.edu.
Information provided by WCU’s Office of International Programs and Services