BSC Office of Communications

News from the Hilltop

August 24, 2009

Birmingham-Southern international students' orientation includes two-day retreat to Selma and Montgomery

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.— Birmingham-Southern College's new international students arrived on campus this week for an international seminar, which includes a look at American culture starting with the historic civil rights movement in Selma.

This year's class of 18 new students will travel to Selma Tuesday, Aug. 25, to St. Paul's Episcopal Church. Father Joseph Knight of St. Paul's will sponsor the students for a day and a half to experience all things southern, including food, lodging, and tours of historical sites. Topics on the agenda will include the “Bible Belt,” southern cuisine, and the Civil Rights movement.

Renowned Alabama author Kathryn Tucker Windham will provide storytelling and a discussion, and the students will take the famed walk across the Alabama River/Edmund Pettus Bridge. They will also tour a large southern farm in Lowndesboro that produces cotton, corn and peanuts.

Students will stop in Montgomery Wednesday afternoon for a tour of the Capital and the Whitehall Interpretive Center prior to returning home to the BSC campus that night.

BSC welcomed its 2009-10 class of international students yesterday. Arriving a week earlier than traditional new and returning students, the BSC international students will spend time this week in orientation activities designed to help the students learn about and adapt to American culture. The current group of Birmingham-Southern foreign students represents a dramatic increase in degree-seeking students at the college and double the number of exchange students in just one year. These exchange students are the result of international university partnerships developed through the Ellie and Herb Sklenar Center for International Programs at BSC.

“These exchange students represent the increase in study abroad students from BSC and the kind of extraordinary experience our students are having abroad as part of the BSC experience,” says Anne Ledvina, associate director for the Sklenar Center.

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