The Slippery Rock University Internations Club, which is made up of both international and domestic SRU students, hosted a Sports Night at the Aebersold Recreation Center for students to participate in, and learn about, sports from other countries.
Shaheer Jilanee, a senior computer science major and the activities coordinator for the Internations Club, thinks that showing off some sports that are not as well-known in the United States is a good learning experience for SRU students.
“I think it’s a lot of fun,” Jilanee said. “It’s definitely a bit of a fact-finding event. You come here, you look at these sports and you’re like, ‘oh I didn’t know this sport was a thing or that sport was a thing.'”
Jilanee said that he encouraged anyone who did not know a lot about a particular sport or did not know how to play a particular sport to engage with an international student that does know about it or does know how to play it. He said this was a good way for SRU students to connect with their international peers.
“[People] are already getting into their favorite sports,” Jilanee said. “Everyone’s just getting into their sports, finding out what they like to play and meeting new people.”
Attendees had the opportunity to play a wide range of foreign sports. Pickleball, soccer, basketball, volleyball, hockey, cricket and badminton were all set up and available to play.
Soccer, basketball, hockey and volleyball are popular and played at high levels world-wide, while pickleball, cricket and badminton are either played in more niche groups or are most popular in only a few countries.
The sports night is the first of six international-themed events that the Internations Club will be hosting as part of Internations Week. Also planned for Internations Week is a fashion show, an open coffee house, a business expo, a round table discussion and, on Saturday, an International Dinner.
Internations Week is a way to celebrate diversity and all the international students that come to SRU and is a way for the international students on campus to showcase to domestic SRU students things about their native countries.