International Education Week: Events running until Nov. 19

A time when students can learn about each other’s identities and cultures 

By Brie Haro | November 16, 2021 1:36pm

International Club is hosting International Education Week from Monday, Nov. 15 through Nov. 19.

Canva by Marek Corsello.

International Education Week (IEW) has been one of the most eventful times on campus — with multiple clubs coming together and celebrating various cultures all while supporting one another with the help of International Student Services. This year is no different.

Starting yesterday until Nov. 19 events highlighting different cultures on campus will be riddled throughout the week, ranging from educational lectures to playing traditional board games. 

Sign in front of the International Student Services Office.
by Marek Corsello / The Beacon

Since last year, the International Club (I-Club) has been responsible for hosting the week — even with the circumstances of being in an online learning environment. I-Club President Shiipin Lau, and Secretary Fatih Scheenstra are excited to be back in-person and can't wait for students to participate. 

“I-Club has just been a really great way to expand my connections and meet new people and learn about their lives and connect with one another on a deeper level,” Scheenstra said. “International Education Week is a time to highlight the variety there is in the student body. We’re all different from one another but we all have similarities too.”

Through education, Scheenstra said that through education, students are able to share their experiences while focusing on the similarities rather than the differences. She has even experienced that herself while being a member of the club and even more so now being on the board. 

“It’s [created] a very deep relationship being able to share and learn from one another,” Scheenstra said. “That’s what the international club has meant to me.”

IEW gives an opportunity for students at UP to celebrate the value of cultural education and exchange. I-Club aims to advocate for diversity at the University, by recognizing and celebrating the different cultures represented on campus through fun and educational events such. This week’s schedule is below: 

International Education Week schedule.

Graphic courtesy of Office of International Education, Diversity, and Inclusion.

Visiting Cultural Education Classes:

This event used to be “visiting language classes”, but I-Club is trying something new this year. Two cultural education classes are willing to open up their doors to any UP students: Cross-Cultural Organizational Behaviors (BUS 360) taught by Fr. Dan Perrish and Cross-Cultural Psychology (PSY 450) taught by Dr. Lauren Berger. Lecture descriptions are in following:

BUS 360 (Monday from 12:30-1:25 pm in BC 017): 

This lecture will highlight a case study on Starbucks’ engagement in promoting environmental preservation via a strategic alliance with the nonprofit organization Conservation International.

Lecture description by Perrish: “The purpose of the alliance was a pilot project to promote coffee-growing practices of small farmers that would protect endangered habitats and, at the same time, produce high-quality coffee beans. The collaboration emerged from the company’s corporate social responsibility policies and its coffee procurement strategy, which are an integral part of Starbucks’ business strategy. We will consider the intricacies of such cross-sector collaborations, in addition to exploring tactics for driving change in the industry for social purposes.”

PSY 450 (Wednesday from 4:10-6:55 pm in BC 130): 

The focus of this lecture is going to discuss culture, personality, and the self. Professor Lauren Berger asks how we can use cross-cultural psychology within society in order to cultivate more inclusive and diverse environments and experiences. While attending, you will also be automatically entered in a drawing to win prizes.

Professor Presentation- Professor Blair Woodard on US-Latin American Relations: 

Nov. 16 from 4-6 p.m.

History professor Blair Woodard will be giving a presentation on his research regarding US-Latin American Relations called “La Línea/The Line: The U.S.-Mexico Border in History and Image”. 

The U.S.-Mexico Border is known as many things, the border, a frontier, escape, opportunity, separation, or simply, the line. The history of this line and how it has been created, depicted and continuously reimagined in both Mexican and U.S. consciousness has been part of the ever-evolving relationship between these two North American nations. This talk will explore the history of the U.S.-Mexico Border in images and history over the last hundred and fifty years.

Collaboration with Cultural Clubs: 

I-Club focuses on highlighting the cultures represented on campus and has collaborated with the Vietnamese Student Association (VSA), South Asian Student Union (SASU), Japanese Student Association (JSA) and Latinx Student Union (LSU) to host fun cultural events.

Learn Japanese with JSA on Nov. 16 in Franz 217. From 5:30-6:30 p.m., they will be practicing calligraphy and learning basic phrases and conversations in Japanese. There will be taiyaki (sweet fish-shaped cake) and pastries. RSVP by Nov. 15 on Engage

LSU will be hosting a traditional dance workshop on Wednesday, Nov. 16 from 7:00-8:00 p.m. in the Terrace Room. You’ll be prepared anytime someone hosts a baile after learning Casino Rueda (a salsa-inspired group dance). 

VSA’s event, “Ham Chơi” will be on Tuesday, Nov. 16 from 7-8 p.m. at the quiet side of Commons. The VSA club will be teaching and playing traditional Vietnamese games.

SASU’s event, “The Importance of Mehndi (Henna) in South Asian Culture” will also be on Tuesday, Nov. 16 from 8-9 p.m. in Franz 120. Mehndi is known as a form of body art specifically within South Asia, the Middle East, North Africa, Somaliland and other communities around those areas. Learn the history and cultural significance of this artform with SASU. 

Espresso UP: 

Nov. 17 from 6:30-9:30 p.m.

A special new drink that was hand-selected by International Club will be offered at UP’s student-run free coffee bar. There Junior’s Coffee, a local micro-roastery based in Portland, will also be tabling to teach about sustainable coffee. Join I-Club in St. Mary’s on Wednesday, to learn more about the global nature of coffee and how to purchase responsibly.

Five Years North Screening and Q&A: 

Nov. 18 at 7:30 p.m. 

To celebrate UP International Education Week, join I-Club in viewing “Five Years North”. This film focuses on a coming-of-age story of an undocumented Guatemalan boy, Luis. After arriving in New York City alone, Luis struggles to work, study and evade ICE officers patrolling his neighborhood. The screening will be in Dundun-Berchtold 032 and will offer an exclusive opportunity to participate in a Q&A session with the directors right after.  

BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color)  Owned Small Businesses on the Bluff: 

Nov. 18 from 1-5 p.m

As I-Club would like to acknowledge and advocate for diversity at UP, they have decided to support BIPOC owned small businesses in Portland too. They are inviting three businesses on campus to sell their products:

  • Mai pnw prints: A group of UP students of Vietnamese descent who make an assortment of stickers pertaining to their cultural background, as well as to popular culture.

  • Ooh! What's this?: Founder Vyvyan Doan retails handmade products including candles, jewelry, bath and body goods, as well as eco-friendly goods that are made by people of color (POC). Ten percent of their sales get donated to new POC creators to support POC and their businesses to allow them to keep making a successful living through their creativity.

  • Taimani Emerald Creative: Taimani Emerald Reed, a whimsical illustrations creator, is committed to changing the world by teaching a message of kindness, anti-racism and community empowerment to people of all ages, Taimani Emerald Creative wrote on Instagram. She will be selling a collection of her artwork that consists of posters, cards and stickers.

International Careers Panel: Q&A with Faculty and Staff

Nov. 18 from 6-7:15 p.m. 

Join faculty and staff in a discussion of careers in international spaces. Learn what some of your UP faculty and staff have done and bring and feel free to ask any questions about how to have an international-focused career. The Panel will be held in Dundon-Berchtold room 032.

  • Ryan Jefferies (Shiley School of Engineering) is a Manager of Fuel Efficiency and Powertrain Concepts at Daimler Trucks North America, headquartered on Swan Island. Part of Ryan's 23-year career at DTNA included a 3-year ex-pat assignment in Stuttgart, Germany at the Daimler AG headquarters.

  • Neil Oculi (CAS-Environmental Ethics and Policy) Neil is an interdisciplinary political geographer. Before moving to the University of Portland, Neil was the Resident Lecturer in Environmental Policy and Socioeconomic Values at the Center for Marine Resource Studies in the Turks and Caicos.

  • Audrey Ralston spent two years teaching English in South Korea (during which she also explored other Asian countries). Following that, she worked for an experiential learning company leading documentary trips for filmmaking students in Guatemala, Bolivia, Malaysia, Tanzania, and Uganda.

  • Anne Pitsch Santiago (CAS-Political Science and Global Affairs) was a Peace Corps volunteer in Mauritania, West Africa, where she was an agricultural extension agent, learned Pulaar, and utilized her French skills.

  • Isabelle Soule (School of Nursing) has a clinical focus on maternal/child global health, and when in the US, I work primarily with immigrant/refugee/asylee populations. I have led interdisciplinary students on trips to Mexico, Ghana, and Thailand and have consulted in Norway, Japan, and Sri Lanka.

Sushi Workshop: 

Nov. 19 from 7-8:30 p.m.

Learn how to make rolled (maki) sushi and about the history and culture of sushi in Japan at the Quiet Side of the Commons. There will be a friendly competition of who can make the best sushi, and the top three winners will win prizes. There is a limit of 60 participants (30 members from JSA and 30 members from I-Club) so please remember to RSVP on Engage to secure a spot.

Global Trivia Night: 

Nov. 19 from 9-11 p.m.

Test your knowledge on world cultures, languages and history at Global Trivia Night hosted by International Club and Pilots After Dark at Pilot House. There’s a chance to win prizes such as exclusive International Education Week merch and international snacks.

Brie Haro is the Community Engagement editor for The Beacon and can be reached at