International students say farewell

Roberto Campos

When some students go home at the end of the semester, they are not only leaving campus; they are leaving the country to go home.

The International Club held a farewell picnic Friday for its members at the log cabins on campus.

International students as well as American students, gathered at the picnic to celebrate this past year.


“When international students come to America they leave their family and don’t know anyone when they get here,” said Khalied Almehri, president of International Club.

“We (the club) are like a small family for them while they’re here.”

The picnic played host to various activities, inlcuding games, giving out funny awards and a big dinner.

“In the fall we hold a welcoming picnic for students, and in the spring we hold a farewell picnic to say goodbye to the international students,” said Gary Wilson, senior international studies major.

Awards that were given out were Most Improved English, Biggest Flirt and Most Likely to be President Award.

“People think International Club is only for international students, but we would really like to see more American students,” said Andrea Barnard, assistant director of International Programs and Services and adviser to the club.

As the evening went, on students laughed and talked, saying their goodbyes.

“International Club is important for USI, because it is a way to expose our campus and its students to many different cultures,” Barnard said.

One of the International Club’s members who attended the picnic had recently returned to USI after studying abroad in Japan.

“They had a program in Japan (like International Club) that helped create friendship between international students and Japanese students,” said Molly Spurlock, sophomore international studies major.

Students reminisced about favorite activities they participated in throughout the year.

“I really enjoyed the Winter Dance Party and the Food Expo. I got to learn about other cultures at the Food Expo and share mine,” said Aya Sagawa, an exchange student from Japan.

Students from Europe, Asia and Latin America were all at the picnic exposing each other to different cultures.

“International Club helps international students learn about the American culture,” Wilson said. “In retrospect, we learn about their culture.”