International Education Week is an annual event that focuses on highlighting different cultures that are represented on college campuses nationwide.
International Education Week took place the week of Monday, Nov. 17 through Friday, Nov. 21 and included an array of events such as cultural corners at Hasbrouck dining hall by students from Egypt, Japan and India. It also incorporated study abroad information sessions and special events for the members of the International Student Union.
The week’s kickoff event on Monday set the tone for the entire week, which included performances by the Asian and Pacific Islander Student Alliance, FOCUS: Dance Collective and a few solo acts.
The event also included presentations on the Foreign Language Scholar Experience, the Romance Languages Community Experience and the Study Abroad Experience. Many of the students who presented at the kickoff event were members of the International Student Union (ISU).
International Student Advisor at SUNY New Paltz, Cindy Cullen, made a speech at the kickoff. She said there are 435 international students enrolled for fall 2014, representing 39 countries.
New Paltz is involved in many partnerships abroad that provide opportunities for students who wish to come and study here.
“The Center for International Programs provides services for international students to study at SUNY New Paltz and for SUNY students to study abroad,” Cullen said. “Currently, we have 140 New Paltz students studying abroad and approximately 400 New Paltz students study abroad per year.”
The week’s main event was the Multicultural Festival which was hosted by the International Student Union last Thursday. The Multicultural Festival included stations from every country represented in the ISU, performances by various dance troupes on campus and a dinner that included traditional foods from the countries represented.
Carlo Fabros, an International Relations student and International student from the Philippines was one of the presenters at the festival. His display on the Philippines included a lot of information on the culture of the country. He already obtained one degree in the Philippines but said that he feels a greater sense of community within the ISU, rather than just in the New Paltz student community.
When it comes to other orgs on campus, Fabros said because he is Filipino, he feels it is harder to assimilate to some of the main stream organizations but that he enjoys being part of the ISU.
“Opening up to different cultures is like traveling the world itself,” he said.