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University of Iowa News Release


Jan. 8, 2007

Public Invited To Share 'Snacks, Laughs' With International Students

Members of the public can meet University of Iowa international students at "Snacks, Chats and Laughs," from 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 20, in the UI International Commons. The event, hosted by Friends of International Students (FIS), is free and open to the public. Those attending are asked to bring snacks to share and board games to enjoy with others. The International Commons is located in University Capitol Centre, on the first floor of the Old Capitol Mall, in the former Younkers department store space.

FIS is a community program designed to match UI international students with members of the local community. It is a non-profit organization of people in the local community who are interested in meeting and helping international students from the UI. FIS is affiliated with the Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS), part of UI International Programs, and is run by community volunteers.

"Snacks, Chats and Laughs is a great time for friends and international students to join together," said Pennie Kincade, FIS board vice president. "The evening will be filled with entertainment by playing board games and sharing snacks. Students are welcome to bring snacks from their culture to share with friends."

FIS matches are invited to attend as well as those who would like to get involved in the program. FIS participants can be families, single people, senior citizens or students. Volunteer community Friends are matched with international students and spend time together doing fun activities that are an everyday part of life such as having dinner together, going on a picnic, going to a movie or just getting together and chatting.

FIS is a flexible program. There are no set activities or time commitments. Although the program encourages people to meet at least once a month, others meet more often.

Nearly 2,200 international students and scholars attend the UI, representing more than 100 countries and independent territories. Currently, among those international students who signed up to have a Friend, there are approximately 20 still waiting to be matched up with a volunteer.

For more information or special accommodations to attend this event, contact Pennie Kincade at 319-338-9788, president Caryl Lyons at 319-626-6277 or e-mail the FIS board at For more information on FIS, visit

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

CONTACTS: Media: Lois Gray, 319-335-2026,; Program: Pennie Kincade, 319-338-9788,; Writer: Kelli Andresen