Western Michigan University's International Festival has been going on for almost 30 years, celebrating cultures from around the campus, from around the world. And this year will also include a food drive.WMU's 29th International Festival is on the second floor of the Bernhard Center, on Sunday, March 25th. The new element added this year is a food drive.

A popular event since 1989, the festival features cultural display tables, performances and a fashion show presenting apparel from students' home countries. Admission is free and, for a nominal fee, attendees may sample traditional cuisine from around the world prepared by international students in campus kitchens under the supervision of WMU Dining Services employees.- WMU University Relations

The Food Drive element added helps the Invisible Need Project Food Pantry. And the inducement to bring non-perishable food items is a chance to win prizes from around campus.

"A common misconception about international students is that they do not suffer from economic hardships when, in reality, they often deal with the same financial constraints as domestic students," says Dr. Paulo Zagalo-Melo, associate provost of the Haenicke Institute for Global Education. "Unexpected financial difficulties can arise in any family from any country. In fact, over 20 percent of the students who access the Invisible Need Project Food Pantry are international.

The International Festival attracts some 7,000 visitors and features groups from all all over the world.

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