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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April
 
 
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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UK Baseball vs. Louisville
Kentucky Children's Garden Spring Break Special!
Pinterest Party #2
Tue
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Men's Tennis vs. Illinois
UK Softball vs. Louisville
UK Men's Tennis vs. Northern Kentucky
Kentucky Children's Garden Spring Break Special!
Student Health Advisory Council Meeting
Best Practices for Tree Planting and Establishment Class 2
Selecting the Right Tree for Your Landscape Class 1
#TrendingTopics: It's Not Easy Being Green
Wed
3
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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UK Toastmasters
Kentucky Children's Garden Spring Break Special!
Thu
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Creoles Topopholia
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Cormac O'Grada - "The Nature of Famines"
"The Nature of Famines," Committee on Social Theory Public Lecture
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Fri
5
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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UK Baseball vs. Florida
UK Softball vs. Texas A&M
Bluegrass Bazaar
Sat
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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UK Baseball vs. Florida
UK Softball vs. Texas A&M
Ride the Legacy
UK Men's Tennis vs. Vanderbilt
Sun
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Boxes & Walls: Oppression through History
Mon
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Job Club: Research Your Target Organization Before the Interview: What to Know and How to Find Out
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UK Softball vs. Wright State
Dine. Discover. Decide.: Connecting students to alumni in 3D!
Earth Days in the Bluegrass and the Late Night Film Series Present: Gasland Part II, A Bike-In Movie
UK Baseball vs. Morehead State
Student Sustainability Council Meeting
Tue
9
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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UK Men's Tennis vs. Ohio State
Boxes & Walls: Oppression through History
Wellness On Wheels
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Overview of Nursing Home Care
Spring (Bike) Fever Twitter Chat
UK Softball vs. Mississippi Valley
Best Practices for Tree Planting and Establishment Class 2
UK Men's Tennis vs. Morehead State
Wed
10
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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LNFS presents American Hustle
UK Toastmasters
Bike-Through Resource Fair
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Presentation by Ladino Rockstar, Sarah Aroeste
Mountain Biking for Beginners Clinic
LNFS presents The Mexican Suitcase
Mr. PharmD
Performance by Ladino Rockstar, Sara Aroeste
Thu
11
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Last Day to Drop a Spring 2014 Course
LNFS presents Boogie Nights
Car-Free Day
What Are They? Some Hidden Forms of the Copula in Old Irish
UK Men's Tennis vs. South Carolina
UK Baseball vs. Missouri
LNFS presents Loose Cannons
Fri
12
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UK Baseball vs. Missouri
UK Men's Golf Bluegrass Invitational
Arboretum Volunteer Training and Orientation
Taste of Africa
Dramatic Presentation -"Las Voces de los Apalaches"
Swing Dancing!
Sat
13
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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UK Baseball vs. Missouri
UK Men's Golf Bluegrass Invitational
UK Men's Tennis vs. Florida
UK Men's Tennis vs. Murray State
Sun
14
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Therapeutic Chair Massage
Mon
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Superheroes On and Off the Page
Parenting Connection Group
Farmer's MarCat & Craft Fair
Student-Teacher-Student Exhibit
Tue
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Inequality in the US: Consequences
Reframing Stress: Do You Know Your Choices?
Best Practices for Tree and Shrub Pruning Class 3
Cooking Class: For True Beginners
Pinterest Party #3
Wed
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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LNFS presents Anchorman 2
UK Toastmasters
Virtual Dementia Tour
Children at Risk Research Conference Keynote Address: Gender, Sexuality, & Risks for Violence among Young Women and LGBTQ Youth in Urban Communities
OUTspoken: Leaving the Second Closet Behind
LNFS presents Easy Rider
Thu
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Children at Risk Graduate Student Research Poster Presenatation
20th Annual Black Women's Conference
Children at Risk Research Conference Speaker: Why Do Home and Neighborhood Issues Become School Safety Nightmares?
The Re-enchantment of Photography as a Primanry Geographic Mapping Medium
The Re-enchantment of Photography as a Primanry Geographic Mapping Medium
UK Softball vs. Arkansas
Fri
19
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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20th Annual Black Women's Conference
UK Softball vs. Arkansas
UK Track and Field Home meet
Unleash the Beast: Paintball Wars
Sat
20
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Sun
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Distinguished Industry Lecture Series, H. Graham Motion and Bruce “Buck” Davidson, Jr.
Mon
22
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
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Explore Leadership Workshops
Job Club: Tighten Your Budget after a Job Loss
‘Project Learning Tree’ Workshop for Educators
Drug War Talk by Anthropologist Howard Campbell
Student Sustainability Council Meeting
Tue
23
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
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EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
LNFS presents The Lego Movie
Registration Deadline: Weight Loss Matters
Legacy Week: Ping Pong Ball Drop
Health Smart: Mindfulness
Pre-Pharmacy Club Meeting
IPM (Integrated Pest Management) and Tree Healthcare Class 4
Shuffle Series: Bluegrass
Wed
24
Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
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LNFS presents The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug
UK Toastmasters
Wellness On Wheels
LNFS presents Juno
Perelman’s Dissociations: Double Fidélité, Fighting the Nazis, and the New Rhetoric Project’s Canon of Invention – Annual Hymson Lecture
Legacy Week: Candlelight Ceremony
Thu
25
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Exhibit: Fauna of Mexico
LNFS presents The Brave Little Toaster
Bonfires of Illusions: the Twin Crises of the Liberal World
Arbor Day Volunteer Orientation and Training
Alex Callinicos - "Bonfires of Illusions: The Twin Crises of the Liberal World
LNFS presents Pariah
UK Theatre presents "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat"
Color Me Spring Fashion Show
Fri
26
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
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Legacy Week: Leave Your Legacy
Arbor Day at The Arboretum
UK Theatre presents "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat"
Sat
27
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UK Theatre presents "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat"
UK Wind Symphony Concert
UK Symphony & Concert Band Concert
Sun
28
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Mon
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Politics in Mexico Today
Tue
30
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Relieving Stress Through Your Senses
Tree Identification Class 5
Massage on the Go #3
The Practicing Happiness Workbook - author presentation
Wed
 
 
 
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