February 09, 2015

Festival celebrates cultural diversity

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Southern Illinois University Carbondale is celebrating people and cultures from around the world and the diversity that makes the university special during this week’s International Festival 2015. 

“Promoting Intercultural Connections” is the theme of the festival. The International Parade of Flags through campus and reading of the festival proclamation by President Randy Dunn kicked off the festival today (Monday) and activities are planned through Friday, Feb. 13. 

The popular International Food Fair is set for 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 11, at the Student Center Ballrooms. Everyone is welcome to attend and sample cuisine from around the world. 

Participants will find tempered potatoes and jollof rice from Africa, baklava and cig kofte from Turkey, fried plantains from Asia, chicken curry from Sri Lanka, hummus with Arabic pita bread from Saudi Arabia, tahcheen tah-chin from Iran, kung pao chicken from China and much more. 

Tickets are 50 cents each. The dishes prepared by students from nine different countries require from one ticket up to 12 tickets for an entire meal. Tickets are available at the door or in advance from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 10 near the Student Center’s first floor north escalators. 

International students will present the Cultural Show at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 13, in the Student Center Ballrooms.  Students representing 14 countries will give a glimpse into their cultures through song, dance, martial arts, mini-plays and various other art forms. 

The show is free and open to the public. 

SIU has welcomed international students since 1947.  There are 1,766 students attending the university from 109 countries. 

Sponsors of International Festival 2015 include the International Student Council, the Student Center, Morris Library, Common Grounds, International Grocery, Old National Bank and numerous other SIU offices and units. 

For more information, visit www.studentcenter.siu.edu/internationalfest or call 618/453-3438.