Organization hosts international chat

The International Coffee Hour allows international and domestic students to connect on common ground while enjoying food and caffeine.

The first Wednesday of every month, International Student Affairs (ISA) hosts a casual social gathering for students, faculty and community members to get to know each other over coffee and food.

The event, which is typically from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the second floor of the University Center, assists international students in making connections with the faculty and domestic students so they can learn from each other outside the classroom.

“It is very important for domestic and international students to become friends and make connections,” ISA President Dharmina Subramaniam said.

Subramaniam, originally from Sri Lanka, moved to Canada when she was 3 because of war in her home country. In 1997, she moved to Kentucky and graduated from Campbell County High School. She came to Northern Kentucky University because of the unique environment it provides with more than 400 international students from more than 80 countries.

With so many cultures, ISA program coordinator Adam Widanski said it is a great opportunity to “get off the classroom learning experience and learn from each other.”

As the program grows, Widanski hopes an environment develops where students, both international and domestic, use the time they have at NKU to build experiences that can transfer into situations faced in every day life.

Subramaniam said that NKU has already given her many opportunities to grow as a leader. “I take everything I learn from in and out of class and apply it to my life and the real world around me.”

Every month, a different community group sponsors the event by attending the coffee hour and providing food.

In February, the Florence Women’s Club came, met students and had them mark on a map where they were from to show to the rest of their club.

“The women are tickled that people from all over the world want to come to Northern Kentucky,” said Florence Women’s Club President Joyce Foley. This is the sentiment that Widanski hopes to relay to the rest of the community.