Maryville College celebrates International Education Week

Celebrating International Education Week Nov. 16-20, Maryville College students, faculty and staff members will experience the distinct food, music and literature of five continents.

An initiative of the United States Department of State and Department of Education, International Education Week (IEW) was begun to “promote international understanding and build support for international educational exchange by encouraging the development of programs that prepare Americans to live and work in a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study in the United States.”

2009 marks the eighth year of its observance throughout the U.S. and in numerous countries worldwide.

Maryville College has long stressed international education and experiences for its students, said Kirsten Sheppard, director of international education.

“The College believes a period of travel and study outside the United States should be a part of one’s education whenever possible,” she said. “Approximately 25 percent of each graduating class has studied abroad.”

Designating Nov. 16 “Africa Day,” IEW organizers have worked with the College’s food service provider to serve African-themed dishes for lunch. The Peace and World Concerns (PWC) committee will kick off a weeklong focus on worldwide poverty and hunger. A presentation on Heifer International is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. in the Center for Campus Ministry.

“Asia Day” is set for Nov. 17. Asian dishes will be offered in the dining hall for lunch. At 6 p.m., the campus community is invited to play “Who Wants to Be on Jeopardy?” (with international-related categories) in Isaac’s Café, which is located Bartlett Hall. The trivia game has been organized by members of the Student Programming Board and leadership honor society Omicron Delta Kappa.

Latin America will be celebrated Nov. 18. In addition to Latin American food served at lunchtime in the dining hall, the campus community is invited to a Spanish club poetry reading at noon and a Brazilian Capoeira from 6 until 8 p.m. in Isaac’s Café. Capoeria is an Afro-Brazilian art form that combines martial arts, music and dance. A local dance group has been asked to perform.

Europe will be the inspiration for lunch on Nov. 19. Also on this day, the International Programming Office has planned a study abroad fair and international fashion show for noon until 2 p.m. in Isaac’s Café. With several international students manning booths about their native countries, the fair is a good venue for MC students to learn about study-abroad opportunities offered at the College. Also on Nov. 19, the staff of the College’s literary magazine Impressions will host a campus SPEAK from 6 until 7:30 p.m. in the Center for Campus Ministry.

American cuisine will be served for lunch on Nov. 20. Programming for the day includes a study abroad session for all freshmen in Lawson Auditorium. Students will learn about opportunities for study abroad during their academic career in College. An evening dance party organized by the Global Citizenship Organization (GCO) is planned from 7 until 10 p.m. in Isaac’s Café. Music for the dance will be current hits from countries around the world.

Throughout the week, photos taken by current students while studying and traveling abroad will be on exhibit in the Bartlett Hall Atrium, with students having the opportunity to select the best image in the International Photo Contest.

Additionally, displays on international education will be located in the library for the five days.

For more information on International Education Week or study abroad opportunities at the College, contact Sheppard at kirsten.sheppard@maryvillecollege.edu or by calling 865-273-8991.

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