Western Courier

Students can get a taste of India

Chris Ginn

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 An opportunity to sample authentic Indian cuisine will be offered at the “A Taste of India” program on Nov. 12 at 6:30 p.m. at the Campus Students for Christ House. The Taste of India is an international scholarship fundraiser sponsored by Phi Beta Delta’s Eta Epsilon Chapter at Western Illinois University.

 Patricia Jones, who was just elected as the National Membership chair, spoke about how the Taste of India program got started.

 “Phi Beta Delta is an honor society that is made up of students, faculty and community members,” Jones said. “One (of) the things we feel is important as an organization (is) to encourage students to have international experiences. We offer a scholarship each semester. One semester is for an international student who is coming to the United States to study, and the other is for an American or domestic student who is going overseas to study. We have ascholarship for each direction.”

 In order to raise funds for those scholarships, Phi Beta Delta offers a number of events throughout the year to support their efforts.

 “What we finally realized is that the one thing that everybody enjoys doing (is) eating something international,” Jones said. “We’ve done three major dinners that were successful. Last year we took a break, and this year we’re going to modify the special event a little bit.”

 A Taste of India is different from previous dinners. There will be a buffet-style tasting instead of a full dinner, along with live entertainment and a silent auction.

  Beverly Baker, the president of the Phi Beta Delta’s Eta Epsilon Chapter, is responsible for setting up the silent auction. The Indian Student Association is organizing a presentation about India to be shown during the cuisine tasting.

 According to Jones, working with international students is a fascinating experience. She said there is always something to learn, something to share and international students are
interested in the American culture.

 Jones believes that if a person has an open mind and an interest in their culture, that they would enjoy attending.

 She spoke passionately about the importance of bringing international students to Western and how the university creates a welcoming academic andsocial experience for them.

 “One of the things that happens when international students come here to Macomb is they are integrated into the community,” Jones said. “You have to have people that are concerned about their wellbeing and are willing to work with them. Faculty in the university has been that way. The administration has provided support services for them.”

 Jones spoke about her experience as an English teacher as well to support her ideas about interacting with international students.

 “Back when I was the director of Western English as a Second Language, we went to China for two weeks,” Jones said. “You have to have people that are on the ground talking to them. But again, if campus and academic life is not a good experience when they get here, all the selling isn’t ever going to matter.”

 Tickets can be purchased in the International Programs Office in Memorial Hall 347 or downtown at the Citizens Bank, which is on the south side of the square.

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The independent student newspaper of Western Illinois University. Serving Macomb since 1905.
Students can get a taste of India