The ninth annual International Night is coming to the Union Ballroom this Friday, Nov. 17. Brought to you by the International Student Council (with sponsorship by the International Student and Scholar Services office and ASUU’s Diversity Board), this year’s International Night “welcomes U to the world” with performances by many talented and diverse student and community groups.
A celebration of culture
“International Night celebrates the many cultures represented at the U and showcases our global community and diversity,” said Sabine Klahr, acting chief global officer in the Office for Global Engagement. “It is an event that brings the campus and local community together and promotes unity and intercultural understanding.”
The evening’s talent includes dance groups, musical performances, martial arts demonstrations and an international fashion show, which gives students an opportunity to showcase traditional fashion from their culture or home country. This year’s International Night will include performances and fashion from nearly every continent, including representation from Afghanistan, India, Japan, Kurdistan, Malaysia, Mexico, Nepal, Philippines, Poland, Puerto Rico, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Tunisia, Venezuela, Vietnam and many more.
“I particularly enjoyed last year’s K-Pop dance by one of our talented international students, Shiyoung Kim, he was great,” said Chalimar Swain, director of ISSS. “I am looking forward to this year’s event and would like to encourage the campus community – including students, staff, family, and friends – to attend and show their support for international students at the U.”
“Experience the world”
The evening will also include a Cultural Showcase featuring student groups representing a wide variety of international cultures sharing information about their organizations and the value they bring to campus. While the evening’s program officially begins at 6:30 p.m., doors will open at 6 p.m. and attendees are encouraged to visit these student group tables prior to grabbing some dinner, which is included in the ticket cost. These student group tables are also a great place to find some extra dessert (in the form international candies and snacks) as you find your way to your seat. Make sure to have your “Cultural Passport” stamped at these tables for an opportunity to win one of International Night’s many great raffle prizes.
“International Night is an opportunity to experience the world inside a ballroom,” says Mohd Iqmal Bin Abd Halim, president of the International Student Council. “If you’ve only ever known about one country your whole life, you can expect to add ten more to the list.”
To cap off the event, Salt Lake City’s premier Japanese taiko drumming group, Kenshin Taiko, will be joining this year’s festivities once again. Always a crowd favorite, Kenshin Taiko is comprised of a group of international musicians dedicated to sharing their love of Japanese culture and their passion for the art form of taiko.
Open to all
Even during his high school days in Salt Lake City, Puneet Singh, associate director of the ASUU Diversity Board, heard tales of the magic of the U’s International Night.
“My favorite parts are the performances, because it allows the U community to see different cultures up close and personal rather than seeing different cultures from a book or on screen,” said Singh, who is a volunteer organizer for this year’s event and will be participating in the cultural fashion show. “The event is never boring and programming is always engaging. It’s an awesome way to support local community members as well.”
International Night tickets are available for $6 in advance at the Union Services Desk, and will be sold for $7 at the door the night of the event. Attendees are encouraged to “check in” on the Facebook event page and are welcome to bring friends and family to the event – no UCard required.