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Thursday, Jul 31, 2014

A Few Clouds, 77 °F

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International week

International Week is one of many events that bring together OHIO's international population and the Athens community.

Photographer: Rick Fatica

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Warm OHIO welcome planned for Athens' incoming international students


As they bid adieu to their homelands, a warm OHIO welcome is being planned for the university’s incoming international contingent.

Ohio University community members are encouraged to join Athens residents at the annual International Potluck Picnic at Richland Avenue Park from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 5.

The event is hosted by International Student and Faculty Services (ISFS) and the International Student Union with support from the Student Activities Commission and the Kiwanis of Athens. It brings together the campus and residential communities for an evening of food, games and global companionship.

Community members are encouraged to bring a dish to share as part of this international potluck.

“It’s really an opportunity for international students to meet different members of the Athens and Ohio University communities and vice versa,” said graduate student Kara Kauffman, who is helping to coordinate the picnic through ISFS.

The International Picnic caps off more than a week’s worth of programming taking place through the ISFS International Orientation. Orientation for graduate students begins Aug. 27, while the undergraduate program kicks off Sept. 1.

Highlights of this year’s orientation include speakers, campus tours, local meet-and-greets and visits to area attractions, including Old Man’s Cave and Grand Central Mall.

According to Director of International Student Services Krista McCallum Beatty, the University’s small-town setting fosters unique connections between OHIO’s international population and local residents. Such relationships enhance the international student’s experience, as well as the town’s unique cultural identity, she added.

“The Athens community is really wonderful in terms of supporting our international community, and we really hope the picnic is the start of strong connections with the community for our new international students,” said McCallum Beatty.