International Education Week, celebrated on campuses all over America, kicked off Tuesday and will run until tomorrow. Its mission is to help students experience cultures from around the world without having to leave their home country.
“In America, most people don’t travel that much, so just to hear about (other cultures) would probably be good,” said Matthew McAllister, freshman pre-engineering major. “Know that your way is not the only way.”
Nicole Reutzel, sophomore math education major, said it is important for students to learn about different cultures. Reutzel also said that there are more international students on campus than she had expected before enrolling, especially for Kansas.
“I think it’s very important that the students that are from here get to know some of the international students because it really is a unique opportunity while we are in college,” Reutzel said. “I mean, I definitely don’t anticipate running into this many people from other cultures daily once I graduate. So I think it’s really a unique opportunity that I think people should take advantage of.”
The largest number of international students at Emporia State come from China, said Rozita Smith, interim director of international student and scholar services. South Korea, Saudi Arabia and Japan take the next four places respectively.
“When we talk about international, it’s not necessarily pertaining to a student from Japan or Korea,” Smith said. “It’s also including the American students because when American students go abroad, the other people also call them international. So when we talk about international, it’s actually all of us.”
A different booth is being set up for International Education Week in the union each day this week. Tuesday was Japanese Day; Wednesday, Saudi and Oman Day; today, South Korean Day; and tomorrow, Chinese Day. Each day, the groups will have a booth set up displaying things from their culture, and students at the booths will show others how to write their names in the “language of the day.”
DohGyoung Ahn, junior pre-art therapy major, said she wanted to go to the booths each day and see the International Culture Show.
“To other international students who (are) yet to come, they’ll have a good impression of this school because it sounds like this school cares about other cultures and diversity,” she said.