Multi-cultural celebration to begin

By Vickie Snow

Exotic food and movies about foreign lands are among the ways NIU will celebrate different cultures next week.

International Relations Week was organized “to increase the awareness of international students on campus,” said Chandru Shankar, president of NIU’s International Relations Club.

About 750 students attend NIU while their families reside in countries like Japan and India. These students feel left out when other students go home on the weekends and the club gives them a chance to meet others in similar situations, Shankar said.

International Relations Week begins Saturday with an international sports festival at the Office of Campus Recreation from noon to 6 p.m. On-the-spot entry allows anyone to participate in free events like basketball, volleyball, tennis, chess and badminton, Shankar said.

Food from around the world can be sampled at the Blackhawk Cafeteria in the Holmes Student Center Monday through Friday, he said.

Monday’s menu will have Indian curried shrimp, Tuesday will feature Spanish-style steak and Sicilian lasagna will give a taste of Italy on Wednesday. Hungarian veal will be served on Thursday and the week ends with Japan’s Ramaki chicken liver.

Another ongoing event for International Relations Week is an international movie festival in Diversions Lounge at the Holmes Student Center from noon to 1 p.m., Shankar said.

Students can see a movie about China on Monday, a movie about Japan on Wednesday and one about Africa on Thursday. The movies for Tuesday and Friday will be announced at a later date.

An international leadership summit will be held Monday from noon to 2 p.m. in the student center’s Heritage Room. A panel discussion will focus on “how you can bring out the best in you,” Shankar said.

In coordination with Minority Relations, the event will feature speakers such as Rob McCormack, NIU Student Association president, Z. Ahmad, program coordinator of NIU University Programming and Activities, and Willard Draper, assistant director of NIU Housing Services.

International Cultural Night is another free event that will be held Tuesday from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. in the student center’s Duke Ellington Ballroom. Dance performances and a kung fu demonstration are a few items on the agenda, Shankar said.

The week will end with an international all-campus mixer and coffee hour Friday night, Shankar said. The disc jockey will start pumping out the tunes at 6:30 p.m. in the International Student and Faculty basement across from Anderson Hall.