sealPurdue News

December 12, 2002

International students, scholars celebrate holidays far from homes

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – More Purdue University international students and scholars are attending the second annual Winter Hospitality Luncheon because of the previous event's success and current international travel concerns, said event organizers.

About 280 international students and scholars who are away from their homes and families are attending the Winter Hospitality Luncheon at noon on Wednesday (12/18) at St. Thomas Aquinas Center, 535 State St.

"More than ever, students from certain regions of the world will carefully consider the risks involved in traveling during the holidays because of the current political climate," said Michael Brzezinski, director of the Office of International Students and Scholars. "Travel plans also may be interrupted from changes in federal regulations. Those who are most affected by this traveling dilemma are students and scholars who need to renew visas while abroad, but are not able to in a timely fashion."

Last year 125 students and scholars attended the luncheon, which is held the week following fall semester finals. This year's guests will dine on a traditional American holiday meal including turkey, potato casserole, and even a vegetarian dish.

"The Purdue community is offering students and scholars who cannot travel home a community to celebrate in," said Whitney Moffett, coordinator and member of the University Religious Leaders. "Last year, University Religious Leaders created the luncheon because we saw a need to help members of the international community celebrate the holiday season, and we hope to share the same success this year with a much larger group."

Sponsors and community donations cover the expense of the free lunch. The event's other sponsors are the Graduate School, the Office of International Students and Scholars and the Office of the Dean of Students.

Purdue has more international students than any other public university in the nation, Brzezinski said. Purdue currently has 5,015 international students — 2,101 undergraduates and 2,914 graduate and professional students, which includes pharmacy, nursing and veterinary medicine students.

CONTACT: Whitney Moffett, (765) 743-3612,; Michael Brzezinski, (765) 494-7084,; Tom Atkinson, assistant dean in the Graduate School, (765) 494-6369,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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