University celebrates week-long education of world’s cultures

Gannon University’s International Student Office (ISO) is bringing the world to Erie by celebrating International Education Week on campus, which started on Monday and will continue through Friday.

The week is mainly sponsored by the ISO in collaboration with other departments and groups on campus.

According to Jason Steinberg, associate director of the ISO, campuses across America try to showcase their international student body and spread globalization among students during International Education Week.

“We just try to bring awareness to the American population about the rest of the world,” Steinberg said.

The week kicked off Monday with the Mark Tayac and the Piscataway Indian Nation Singers and Dancers who showcased the Native American culture.

The International Student Office (ISO) also held a two-day Study Abroad Fair at the Palumbo Academic Center to introduce students to global destinations to study in like Australia, Jordan and London.

As part of their attempts to bring the world closer to Gannon, The ISO and the Center for Social Concerns presented stories of homelessness from around the world in an event known as “Not Just in Our Backyard” on Tuesday.

The event featured stories from China, Haiti and the United States, among other countries.

According to Steinberg, the ISO is trying to bring something different on campus and add a twist to traditional nnual events like the International Cultural Fair, in which students present information about their countries and traditions.

“We are going to have interactive videos on every single table instead of just leaflets and brochures,” Steinberg said. “This could add a dimension of intrigue and interest to students walking by.”

Several countries are going to be represented in this year’s cultural fair, Steinberg said, including Haiti and Mali.

Daniel Lim, an electrical engineering student from Singpaore, said he looked forward to participating in the cultural fair Thursday.

“I am going to introduce Singapore to others and tell them about the Singaporean culture and life,” Lim said. “We are going to show what differentiates Singapore from other cultures.”

Ahmed Almarzooqi, a sophomore environmental engineering student, said the reason he is participating in the fair was to let the world learn about the United Arab Emirates.

“We are planning to show some videos about UAE, its tourism, climate, history and leadership,” Almarzooqi said. “It’s a chance for everyone to learn about UAE and correct their ideas about it.”

In addition to the fair, the ISO is also hosting a Dance Off party at 7 p.m. Thursday at The Knight Club.

“We’re not trying to shove international down people’s throats,” Steinberg said. “We are trying to bring international to what they already like and they like to dance, so now we’re going to provide them with the opportunity to do that to music that is literally global.”

The week will conclude with an APB-sponsored showing of “Billu Barber,” a Bollywood film, 7 p.m. Friday in Room 104 of the Zurn Science Center.

“It’s just a cool chance for them to get a little bit of internationalization,” Steinberg said.

 

HIBA ALMASRI

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