Foreign students will get taste of holiday

While many members of the UDM community are looking forward to celebrating another Thanksgiving with family and friends, some international students are excited about their very first Thanksgiving. 

The Cultural Conversation Partners Program is hosting a traditional Thanksgiving dinner for students on Saturday, Nov. 23, at 3 p.m. in Reno 165, said coordinator Colleen Kurecka.

“We will be serving free, traditional Thanksgiving food for international and domestic students alike,” said Kurecka. “We usually have a pretty good turnout and we ask that those attending bring a canned good.”

Naser Abubaker, an engineering graduate student from Libya, is excited about his first Thanksgiving in America.

“I will try anything new,” said Abubaker. “I am excited to see what the food is like and getting to meet with other people, which I think is the most important part.”

Third-year finance student Nino Sujashvili, who is from Georgia, has spent a few Thanksgivings in America, but she said that she is thrilled to experience another one.

“Before I came here, I knew that Thanksgiving was a day of giving thanks for Americans,” said Sujashvili. “I knew that it was something big, but I didn’t know how they celebrated. I was amazed at all the food.”

Sujashvili also enjoys taking part in another Thanksgiving tradition, Black Friday sales.

“I like shopping the Black Friday sales at night,” said Sujashvili. “I like watching the huge lines of people outside stores and the shopping mall.”

With three days off this year, Abubaker said that he will probably spend his time checking out the city.

“I like to go out and explore the city and hang out with my friends,” said Abubaker. “Mostly I am excited to discover this new holiday because this may be one of the only chances I get to celebrate it here.”

Last Thanksgiving Sujashvili, who plays on the tennis team, said that her coach made her team Thanksgiving dinner and that spending time with those you care about transcends cultures.

“I don’t know what I am doing this year, but … last year was really nice,” said Sujashvili. “If we do that again, I will go to that. It feels good to all be together and spend time together. That is very similar to what we do in my culture.”