Amongst the chaos of the beginning your college life, it is difficult to keep all the acronyms and abbreviations straight. One acronym you may see around but might not know about is COISO.
The Council of International Students and Organizations is the second largest student organization on campus and represents the needs and interests of the international student body. It also serves as the umbrella organization for more than 25 international and cultural student organizations. COISO organizes events such as International Week, United Nations Day, retreats, excursions, and other social events for UM students.
United Nations Day is held in the fall of each year and is an opportunity for all of the COISO groups to tackle a worldwide issue from their culture’s perspective. Whether it is Global Health or “The Path to Peace,” seeing how different countries and cultures have faced the issue shows not only the uniqueness of different groups people, but also the similarities.
Mr. and Ms. International is a new tradition that allows UM students to strut their talents with an international flair. The winners of the pageant receive prizes and reign over International Week, which is held in the spring of each year.
International Week is COISO’s largest event. Each day of the week is dedicated to a different region of the world, and different COISO clubs put together displays, performances, costumes, and food to show the culture of that region. The purpose of the week is to allow UM students to experience different cultures from around the world without having to leave campus.
Students do not have to be an International Student to participate in COISO events. Many members of the organizations under COISO are students from around the country who are interested in promoting their own culture or learning about the cultures of others.
There are many ways students can become involved with COISO. If they are interested in a particular country or culture, they can join that organization, or as many as they want. If they are interested in being involved with the bigger events that COISO puts on, then they may want to apply for a Cabinet position. Positions range from UN Day Chair and I-Week Chair to Public Relations and Webmaster.
Applications will be available early in the fall semester, so stop by the COISO office located in the International Lounge on the second floor of the UC to pick one up.I
For more information, contact the COISO office at 305 285 3548 or stop by UC 213.