May 10, 2007
By Jessica Cuffman
"Many Paths, a Common Future" is the theme of this year's International Week. It's an apt title, considering the many paths Ohio University members and the community have taken to Athens, Ohio.
The week's celebration begins on Sunday with a photography exhibition and the showing of the movie, "The Killing Fields" about the Cambodian genocide from 1975-1979.
International Week 2007 schedule of events
Sunday, May 13
- "Camera Speaks," 7 p.m. in the Front Room
- Showings of "The Killing Fields," 3 p.m. and 9 p.m. in Baker University Center Theater
Monday, May 14
- Cambodian Photo Exhibition and Reception, 7 p.m. on Alden Library's first floor (on display through May)
Tuesday, May 15
- Dith Pran, keynote address, 7:30 p.m. Baker Center Ballroom (followed by reception and book signing)
Wednesday, May 16
- Taste of Study Abroad, 5 to 7 p.m. Grover Center
- Showings of "The Killing Fields," 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. in Baker University Center Theatre
Thursday, May 17
- International Student Union Talent Show, 7 to 9 p.m. in Baker University Center Theatre
Friday, May 18
- Fair Trade Forum, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. in Scripps Auditorium
- Alan Boyd retirement reception, 3 to 5 p.m. in Baker 240
Saturday, May 19
- International Street Fair, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Court Street
For the most up-to-date schedule of events visit: www.ohiou.edu/internationalweek/
The photo exhibition will display pictures taken with disposable cameras this spring by Fulbright scholars who are studying at Ohio University from countries around the world. It's called "Camera Speaks" and will be featured in the Front Room for the duration of the week.
The "Killing Fields" focuses on the life of photojournalist Dith Pran, this year's International Week keynote speaker. The movie will be shown several times during the week in Baker Center and on the university's inter-cable network.
"When we started asking, we found college students didn't know Pran's name," said Krista McCallum Beatty, International Student and Faculty Services associate director. "We decided it would be important to show the film on campus so people would learn more about his story. "
Related to Pran's experiences will be a photo exhibition on display in Alden Library throughout May titled "Year Zero to 2006: Images and Histories from Post-Khmer Rouge." It is an exhibit of text and photographs documenting the effects of the Cambodian genocide on Cambodian society.
"The project itself entailed interviewing, photographing and documenting the personal experiences of survivors of the Khmer Rouge regime," said Karla Schneider, assistant director of the Center for International Studies. Two undergraduates from the University of Michigan, Lara Finkbeiner and Emma Nolan-Abrahamian, compiled the project, which is on loan to Ohio University through May.
A reception following the opening of the exhibit will focus on five Cambodian Ohio University students who will share how the genocide has affected their life experiences. There are less than 100 Cambodian international students studying in the United States this year.
The week's events include new activities as well as International Week traditions, such as the talent show, an international student-centered event that usually draws a crowd. "It's always a lot of fun," McCallum Beatty said.
An exciting new event is the Fair Trade Forum. It will include free sampling of chocolate and coffee from Donkey, vendors selling fair trade goods, film screenings related to the subject and a panel discussion of locals who are involved in fair trade. Some of the local vendors include Good Works and Bali Karma, and the headlining film will be "Black Gold." The Fair Trade branch of the Sustainable Living Organization organized the forum.
Sponsored by Education Abroad, "A Taste of Study Abroad" will highlight different world cultures and feature samples of indigenous foods.
As always, the week will culminate with the International Street Fair, which will celebrate its 25th anniversary this year. In the morning, a Cambodian drumming group will lead groups of children in a parade down Court Street to kick off the day. Afterward, the children may participate in a Passport Project sponsored by The Athens Messenger that will encourage them to visit multiple booths and learn something about each culture featured at the fair. Children interested in participating in the parade should meet at the monument on the College Green at 11 a.m.
The bands the Boys of the Hock and Los Viejos Blanquitos will be the pinnacle entertainment of the event. A variety of dancers will also be featured throughout the day.
"Regardless of where we have come from or how we came to be at Ohio University, a common future is something we all will share," Schneider said. "This year's theme ties together local and global issues and emphasizes learning from the past to create a better future."