World comes alive with Diversity Night March 14

World comes alive with Diversity Night March 14 This year's International Student Club president, NT Mlazie, is excited about the club' s most popular event of the year � Diversity Night � to be held March 14 at the commons in Beede Mickelson Hall at 6:30 p.m.

Diversity Night includes food and entertainment from around the world, including the diversified American culture. Mlazie says Diversity Night has been successful in Vermillion since its inception, and she feels that it is especially important this year as we are on the brink of war.

International students wish to be considered part of the Vermillion community. That is one of the reasons for Diversity Night. It is also to help show that international students' ideas are a diversified as Americans' ideas and the wish to feel safe is common for everyone.

In addition to Diversity Night, there are other opportunities for the Vermillion community to interact with international students. The Branches Program matches international students with families in the community, giving both parties an opportunity to know the world beyond their respective cultures.

Mlazie describes Vermillion as "quiet and full of opportunity." She comes from Botswana, and appreciates having a Branches family. Grace and Harry Freeman and their children became Mlazie's Branches family almost two years ago. Mlazie appreciates learning the nuances of a new culture from the Freemans.

"In my country, one never disagrees with an elder, ever," she said. "Grace and Harry coaxed me into telling them how I really felt about different issues, and allowed me to really be myself."

Dave Lorenz, dean of students at The University of South Dakota, has had the opportunity to welcome several Branches students into his family over the years. He says that it has not only allowed him and his family to learn about places in the world that they were not familiar with, but it has also allowed them to make lifelong friends.

Another opportunity for interaction is the International Student Club (ISC). If American students, faculty or community members are interested in being a part of the International Student Club, they are encouraged to join. T he club is designed for people from everywhere around the globe, including the United States.

Diversity Night tickets are on sale for $6 March 10-14 at the SAC office in the Coyote Student Center. For more information on Diversity Night, ISC or Branches, e-mail Mlazie at nmlazie@usd.edu, or call the International Student Advising Office at 677-5331.

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