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Festival showcases food and culture of 15 nations

March 18, 2007

KALAMAZOO--Area residents will have a chance to learn about other countries as well as sample exotic cuisines during Western Michigan University's 18th annual International Festival Sunday, March 25, from 4 to 8 p.m. in the East Ballroom of the Bernhard Center.

This year's festival will spotlight 15 nations on five continents. Admission is free, and food will be sold for a nominal fee.

The International Festival is a global open house that attracts about 4,000 students and community members each year. It allows participants to "travel" around the world in a single evening while gaining an appreciation for WMU's cultural diversity.

WMU enrolls nearly 1,000 international students from some 80 countries and ranks among the nation's top 70 universities in terms of international enrollment. The University also supports a wide variety of international student groups. Among those participating in International Festival 2007 are the Korean Student Association, Latino Student Alliance, Hong Kong Student Union, Russian Club and the African Students Association.

"International Student Organizations from WMU and the International Festival Planning Committee have spent months preparing for this year's festival of foods, fashions, performances and displays," says Katie Smith, president of WMU's International Programs Council, which organizes the event with the Campus Activities Board. "International Festival is a great way to showcase the many countries and cultures of our students from around the world at Western."

The festival is co-sponsored by the Diether H. Haenicke Institute for Global Education, Division of Student Affairs, University Cultural Events Committee, Graduate Student Advisory Committee and Western Student Association.

For more information, contact Kimberly Ritter, coordinator of international student activities, at kimberly.ritter@wmich.edu or (269) 387-5872.

Media contact: Jeanne Baron, (269) 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

WMU News
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