Sarah Geegan

K Week International Orients Students From Across the Globe Into Wildcat Family

Published: Aug 20, 2013

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Video by UK Public Relations and Marketing

 

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 20, 2013) University of Kentucky students come from all over the map — from as nearby as Fayette county, to as far away as Vietnam. Though their hometowns vary, they all share one thing in common; they're part of a Big Blue community that comes together during one of the most exciting times on UK's campus: K Week.

 

For international students at UK, K Week starts a week earlier, with K Week International Orientation, a series of events designed especially to support students coming to UK from abroad. More than 400 international undergraduate, graduate and CESL (Center for English as a Second Language) students will arrive during K Week International Orientation; UK currently hosts approximately 1,900 international students from 114 different countries.

 

The week allows them to meet and engage with other international students and to learn about important campus resources.

 

SahleMichael Hailu, a mechanical engineering student from Ethiopia participated in K Week International when he first arrived in Lexington; he said the experience helped him grow not only as a student, but as a person.

 

"When you come to a different place, the best part of being a part of a different country is the transition you make into the culture and the things you learn," he said. "If you just stick to the community you're used to, there's nothing you're learning and there is nothing you're experiencing. So coming to a place like Lexington was a really great opportunity for me to adjust to a new environment. I'm glad that I utilized it to its full potential."

 

Elizabeth Leibach, director of International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) at the UK International Center (UKIC) sees K Week International as a soft landing to what will be a challenging and exciting journey in the lives of many international students at UK.

 

"Some of these students have never been out of their home country or even on an airplane until this trip," Leibach said. "Students who take full advantage of this week, and the various sections of UK 101, which are also taught by some of the ISSS staff, will be more successful in navigating the maze of college life and U.S. culture."

 

ISSS provides expertise in the advising and immigration needs of the more than 1,900 international students, 325 international faculty and staff and 250 exchange visitors at UK. ISSS also administers university compliance with evolving federal regulations and facilitates the well-being of all international students, faculty, staff and scholars. K Week International plays a big role in enhancing students' well-being.

 

The week includes social events that allow students to interact with other international students. Bill Aboagye, a medical laboratory science sophomore from Ghana, said that the best part of K Week International for him were the relationships that he generated.

 

"I made friends from my first day here at UK and in the U.S. generally, and they are still my friends now," Aboagye said. "Many people helped me out with many other things that I needed help with, my academics, with getting to network with people and finding a first family away from home. Lexington is an amazing community. There are many people that you can easily talk to, even people you don't know, and now UK people are my family."

 

The week also includes informative sessions with speakers and representatives from campus resources. An Ho, a biochemistry senior from Vietnam, said that she appreciated both types of events, social and informative.

 

"I received a lot of information about immigration status, for example, and how to maintain that, so the information was very helpful,"  Ho said. " Also, I'm kind of an introverted person, so it's sometimes hard for me to talk with people, especially in English, because it's not my first language. These events helped me try to be brave, so I talked to more people. The more people I talked to, I found that they are really friendly. I found out I had to open up more."

 

Zinan Chen, an alumna from Beijing, China, with a degree in mathematics, said that K Week International fostered a feeling of unity — an idea that international students at UK would embrace their new community together.

 

"I remember sitting outside UK International Center in a round circle talking about culture shock," Chen said. "To listen to other international students talking about it makes you less afraid because everyone is facing problems, and it gets better. I would tell anyone not to be scared to come here; I love Lexington. Being from Beijing, a very crowded city, it was a big difference coming here when I first arrived, but now when I go visit other places in the U.S., I always feel like Lexington is my hometown now."

 

UKIC internationalizes UK's campus by recruiting students from around the world — students who transform the university through diverse perspectives in education and research, as well as unique insight into global issues.

 

“Internationalization of our campus is an imperative for a number of reasons," said UK President Eli Capilouto. "We provide an even better education for our students when the environment is diverse and inclusive, when students are engaged with people from all walks of life and all kinds of backgrounds. That is precisely what they will encounter as they compete in a global, interdependent economy."

 

The UKIC provides leadership, raises awareness, facilitates the pursuit of international education and encourages global collaborations for the university community and the Commonwealth.

 

K Week International began on Saturday, Aug. 17. Click here for a full schedule of events.

 

 

 

MEDIA CONTACT: Sarah Geegan. (859) 257-5365; sarah.geegan@uky.edu

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1
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Fri
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Sat
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Artful Sunday: Wrapped Art
Sun
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Mon
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Tue
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Get Moving - A Walking Group for Caregivers
Wed
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Thu
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Fri
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Sat
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Sun
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Mon
12
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
UK Working Moms Connection
Tue
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Wed
14
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Thu
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Fri
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Sat
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Sun
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Mon
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Employee Educational Assistance Award
Tue
20
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Chronic Disease Self-Management Program
Wed
21
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Thu
22
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Midnight Dodgeball Tournament
CARES First Year Focus Parent Meetings
CARES First Year Focus Parent Meetings
Parent and Families Reception
Residence Hall Floor Meeting
Off-campus Freshmen Check-in
K Team Meeting: K Week Kick-off
Death By Chocolate
Fri
23
Employee Educational Assistance Award
A Parent's Guide to Life after August 23
Campus Safety Information Session
Donut Avoid The Study
Common Cents: Money Management for College Students Session 1
See Blue...See Community
Succeeding in A Large Lecture Classroom
Horses, Bluegrass, Basketball, and More: Welcome to Kentucky
Success at Any Age: College Tips for Adult Learners
Write Right: Tips for Writing Well in College
Common Cents: Money Management for College Students Session 2
How to Graduate in Four Years
Parental Involvement in Fraternity and Sorority Life
Parents Watch for Warning Signs: Suicide Prevention for College Students
Preparing to be a Pre-Professional
Presentation U!: Where YOU are the Ultimate Presentation
Religious Life at UK
Successful Off-Campus Living
The Transfer Student Cruise: Navigating your way through UK
UK Parking & Transportation 101
You Heard It Here First: Tips From A Faculty Member
New Student Induction Ceremony
Minority Student Welcome
Transfer Student Cookout
K Team Meeting: K Week Overview
Men's Soccer vs. Georgia State
Big Blue U
Campus Ruckus
Campus Ruckus
Sat
24
Employee Educational Assistance Award
LNFS Presents: Jackass 3
LNFS Presents: Godzilla
Pedalpalooza
K Team Meeting: Lunch and Campus Tour
Center for Community Outreach: Do Good, Start Here.
UK Lex-Mart
Alternative Service Breaks: See the World, Change the World
From the Real World to the Amazing Race, Don't Wipeout: Your Advisor, Advising, and You
Blackboard Basics
Student Government Association Information Session
EMPOWER: Women’s Leadership Retreat Interest Session
Student Center Spectacular
Student Center Spectacular
Sun
25
Employee Educational Assistance Award
UK FUSION
UK Parking & Transportation 101
University of Kentucky Association for Transfer Students Interest Session
Candy, Condoms, Coffee
Cleaner, Healthier, Cheaper, Faster: Why Bicycling is the Best Way to Get Around Campus (and how to do it safely)
Working on Campus
K Team Meeting: Dinner with your K Team
Meijer Mania
Mon
26
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Last Day to Drop a Course with 100% Refund
Chem at UK Cafe-N-OJ with the Student American Chemical Society
Coffee (or Coke), Cookies, & Communication!: Come see blue. at Presentation U!
Don't Blow Yourself Up: Surviving Chemistry
Fraternity Recruitment Info Session
OMG! Did I Just E-Mail That to My Professor???
Surviving Your First Year and Beyond: Strategies To Do Well in Your Classes
Sustainable UK: Exploring Environmental Programs in the College of Agriculture, Food, and Environment (CAFE)
A User Guide for Your Mathematics Class
Discover the UK Art Museum
K Team Meeting: Common Reading Experience Discussion
Common Reading Introduction for International Students
Transfer Student Meet and Greet
We Are UK
Rec 'N Roll 2014
Big Blue Bingo Night
Mic Check
Tue
27
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Fraternity Recruitment Info Session
LNFS Presents: Jurassic Park
First Day of Classes
Open House - Special Collections Research Center
King Cookout
Campus Outreach
Opening Act: The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Wed
28
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Internship Info Session
LNFS Presents: Her
LNFS Presents: Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Student Involvement Fair
OrgSync Info session
LGBTQ* Welcome Back
Dive Into Diversity!
CATalyst's Dive Into Diversity Session
Residence Hall Floor Meetings
Thu
29
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Sea of Blue
One Last Beach Bash: RSA Block Party
LNFS Presents: Team America: World Police
Pills and Pizza
K Week Event: Pills and Pizza
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Wichita State
Kentucky Women's Soccer vs. Francis Marion
Fri
30
Employee Educational Assistance Award
LNFS Presents: Neighbors
The Tailgate "Kick-Off"
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Butler
Kentucky Football vs. UT-Martin
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Virginia Tech
Sat
31
Employee Educational Assistance Award
Kentucky Women's Soccer vs. Ohio
Men's Soccer vs. Belmont
Sun
 
 
 
 
 
 
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