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University of Iowa News Release


Feb. 4, 2008

Student groups, community volunteers sought for diversity festival Feb. 24

University of Iowa student groups and members of the community are needed to volunteer for the University of Iowa's 19th annual Celebrating Cultural Diversity Festival from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 24, in the UI Field House.

The free festival, which annually attracts 3,000 to 5,000 visitors, represents more than 100 domestic and international cultures by showcasing foods, arts, crafts, dance performances, the spoken word, martial arts and children's activities. The goal of the festival is to provide a fun, unique opportunity where people can learn about each other's customs, traditions and perspectives.

"Student groups have historically been an integral part of the festival," said Jennifer Richman, assistant director of the UI Office of Student Life and member of the festival planning committee. "Many students from all over the world find a sense of family in their student organization, and it is an honor for many of these diversity-based student organizations to share their cultures with the UI and Iowa City communities during the festival."

Richman said she encourages any group wishing to raise funds for their organization as a vendor, or to perform or present a program that educates and shares their traditional cultural activities, to call the UI Office of Student Life at 319-335-3059.

Volunteers are also needed the day of the festival from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. to work for three-hour shifts. Responsibilities include selling soda pop, assisting with program set-up, passing out flyers or surveys, driving a shuttle van and monitoring rooms. To volunteer, call Benjamin Black at 319-335-9230. Volunteers can also sign up online at

"The festival is fortunate to have a high level of student and community volunteers, but like any other large event, there is always room for more," Richman said.

For more information about the festival, see

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

MEDIA CONTACTS: Jennifer Richman, Office for Student Life, 319-335-3059,; Benjamin Black, Residence Life, University Housing, 319-335-9230; Lois J. Gray, University News Services, 319-384-0077,; Writer, Gloria Hurtado