Nova International Student Association, the Student Events and Activities Board in the Office of Student Activities, and the Office of International Affairs are hosting the annual International Students Week from Nov. 14-18.
Lesley Hagan, senior biology major and president of NISA, said the Office of International Affairs sets aside a week each year to raise awareness about diversity on campus.
“There are about 124 countries represented on this campus and that’s pretty big, so they want to do something to show that,” said Hagan.
The week’s kickoff event will be held today in the Don Taft University Center pit from 12 p.m. – 1 p.m. There will be music, food, a cotton candy machine, a popcorn machine and craft work, said Hagan.
“It’ll be a set up like a SEA Thursday and we will have as many countries represented as we can, like China, Vietnam and France. There will be activities that represent the different countries. People will dress up and you will be able to find out information about the different countries. It will be like an international fun fair, but on a small scale,” she said.
Jade Rissman, junior management marketing major and vice president of NISA, said the purpose of this week is also to promote student involvement.
“This campus is made of 30-40 percent international students, so we want the whole week to be for them, so they feel recognized and at home. It’s an annual tradition we’re trying to carry out and make it bigger and bigger,” she said.
On Wednesday, NISA will host an Olympics basketball event and, on Thursday, NISA will advertise for their annual Thanksgiving dinner from 12 p.m. – 1 p.m. in the Don Taft UC. Hagan said the dinner will be held on Nov. 21 from 6 p.m.– 9 p.m. on the 2nd floor of the Don Taft UC.
“We all get dressed up and eat good food and enjoy entertainment. People bring family and friends and we get to meet them. It’s really interactive and fun. Last year, we won the event of the year because of how big our turn out was,” she said.
Claire Verret, sophomore biology major and NISA member from Haiti, said she is happy to see that NSU is diverse and filled with many international students because that’s one of the reasons why she chose to attend this school.
“It’s going to be a really fun week. [Through NISA] you get to meet people from other places. When you come here it’s really different, and it’s a shock because you don’t know how things go, but you meet people and they go through the same things as you. It’s more comforting and that’s why I stuck with NISA.”
Hagan said, “NISA is like your home away from home.”