Maggie Giordano | Contributing Writer
Originally published August 2017
The Office of Intercultural Relations hosted the Global Family Welcome on Aug. 31. It occurred from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Ainslie Football Complex Lexus Terrace located on 49th St. Monarch Dining and the Visa and Immigration Services Advising helped to sponsor the event. Students, faculty and families were welcomed for a chance to meet new and old students.
The Global Family Welcome was a gathering of diverse individuals who were able to enjoy an evening of friendship and food. Monarch Dining provided dinner for the crowd. Some of the foods that attendees were served were sandwich wraps, fruit, vegetables and pastries. Students received a free t-shirt, free sunglasses and a bag of candy to take home.
Members of the community were encouraged to celebrate different cultures and connect with other members of the community at this event that was during the Week of Welcome. The Week of Welcome is a week of events and traditions to help students become better acquainted with the campus and to make connections with other Monarchs. Some events have included a First Year Student Breakfast, Transfer Tuesday, Monarch Beach Bash and many more that give students the chance to get involved in the university community.
“This is a good event because I think it helps people that are from other countries to feel more welcomed,” sophomore, Isaac Sexton, said.
Members of organizations such as the Indian Students Association and the Filipino American Student Association attended to support the University’s diversity. With over 300 organizations, there are many clubs that revolve around different cultures that gives students a chance to learn about the different diversities that the University has to offer. The Week of Welcome and events similar to the Global Family Welcome give these organizations a chance to be involved and gain new members.
“We were able to learn more about the culture of others and share with each other. It is important to know other cultures so that we can respect others and understand better,” international student from Mexico, Rida Merac, said.
Students had a chance at two raffles in which they wrote down their information and put it into a box for a drawing, as well as a social media raffle where they could win if they used the hash tag “#GFW17.” The two prizes were goodie bags that included a small stuffed animal of Big Blue, a pair of sunglasses, a drawstring backpack and more.
Upcoming events from the Office of Intercultural Relations will be during Hispanic Heritage Month in September. This will include a co-sponsored event, Adelante: Hispanic Freshman & Family Reception in which students, families, faculty members and staff will have the opportunity to connect to others while enjoying a dinner on September 18 at the Big Blue Room at the TED Convocation Center at 6 p.m. They will also host a Global Café on Sept. 21 in which students will have the chance to learn about other countries in the Office of Intercultural Relations located at the Hampton/Newport News Room in the Webb Center.
For more information on the Office of Intercultural Relations and more upcoming events, visit odu.edu/oir or visit orgsync.com.