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Students Attend International Day at Wingate University

Eleven students recently visited Wingate University to tour the campus and visit with a panel of international students. In addition to the panel discussion, students received a tour of the Wingate University campus that included their Student Center, where flags of countries were displayed representing places that Wingate students had visited through Winternational and Study Abroad programs. Five international athletes representing South Africa, Germany, France, Sweden, and Brazil also spoke about their culture and some of the difficulties they encountered when they came to the U.S. for school.

On Wednesday, April 18, eleven students, along with Ms. Medlin and Ms. Janet Stegall , visited Wingate University to tour the campus and visit with a panel of international students. Students who attended the tour were Katelyn Callahan, Jacqueline Price, Kayley Eudy, Miranda Seegars, Garrett Price, Paul Norwood, Marianna Norwood, Michaela Hayes, Paida Mushonga, Gabriela Velasquez and Gabrielle Yang. The day began at 9:00 a.m. with a tour of the campus. The tour guide spoke to the students about campus life and how important it is to become involved in different club activities while in college. She also stressed service-learning and giving back to the community. The tour included a stop in the Ethel K. Smith Library, where students had a chance to see all of the resources available.
The students had the chance to see all the new apartments that are being built and to hear the history of “the quad”, which is where Wingate has held its commencement ceremonies for many, many years. After the tour, students moved to the Batte Fine Arts Building to hear from the panel of international students. Junior Nyemb, a graduate student, was the moderator and facilitator of the program. He spoke to the students about the importance of understanding other cultures. He stated that it was important to know about other cultures so one could understand his/her own self. Junior introduced the five student athletes who spoke to the students. Countries represented included South Africa, Germany, France, Sweden, and Brazil. The international students spoke about their culture and about some of the difficulties they encountered when they came to the U.S. for school. Learning English was the most common obstacle. Another difference the Wingate students spoke about was food. They said the portions here are much bigger than in their home countries. They think our food is very unhealthy. After they presented, students engaged in a Q & A session. Most of the questions revolved around food, education, and sports. Following the question/answer session, students were treated to lunch in the cafeteria, which they thoroughly enjoyed.

When asked what her thoughts were about the trip, Paida stated that “I really loved the campus. It was was interesting to find out what the international students thought about Americans.” One of the Wingate students made the remark that Americans don’t really seem to care about politics and that they live their own lives and don’t try to find out what’s going on in the rest of the world. The students were also shocked at how many of their American college peers do not take an interest in the news. Piedmont has been involved in the trip for three years, and each year, the students learn more and more about other cultures and about the different stereotypes that exist. It is a wonderful globalization opportunity and learning experience for both high school and university students.

Written by: Angela Medlin, CTE Teacher/New Global Citizens Adviser
Posted: May 07, 2012 by Donna Helms

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