On September 13 at 10 p.m. students are invited to join the International Club in Ramaker for their annual ice cream social. This is the introductory event for I-Club to the student body. I-Club president Diviya Nyanaguru explained, “The purpose of the ice cream social is to introduce the club to campus and to invite everyone. This isn’t just a club for international students, but also American students to socialize more with each other.”
Many students describe I-Club as a “home away from home”. I-Club member Sadikshya Gautam said, “The ice cream social is to help new international students to feel more welcome and to get to know each other better, to make more connections with the rest of campus.”
While many view the International Club as a place for international students to meet and get to know one another, many of the students involved say that the club has been a great way for them to meet American students as well. “Similar stories, similar home lives and who are going through the same experience of being in a new culture,” said Gautam.
For members, like Gautam, International Club helped her to get out of her comfort zone, talk to more people and be able to immerse herself more in the cultures that are represented here on campus. “It really has made me into the person I am at college,” Gautam said.
This year in I-Club, there are fifteen new students and a total of around forty international students. While in previous years a majority of the students were from one particular area in the world, this is a year wide variety of countries and cultures are being represented here on campus by our international students. This wide number of different cultures brings a unique opportunity for students to learn about different perspectives from around the world.
“This year will be very exciting for us,” Nyanaguru said. “I understand that it’s always hard for people to come to I-Club because it’s something new, but we create a family together and this year our family is more international.”
Similarly to previous years, the International Club will be holding the ice cream social, the I-Club coffee house, the Ethnic Fair and other events. Unlike previous years, the Ethnic Fair will be held in January rather than in March. I-Club’s hope is to keep things lively and exciting all year round.