International Night Recap


A night led by International Speakers Helping Others club and River Bend Middle School showcased the various cultures of students and staff at both schools. 

On Mar. 1, International Speakers Helping Others club (ISHO) teamed with River Bend Middle School (RBMS) to host an International Night celebrating students’ cultural background and heritage. 

 “ISHO is a club where we help new students, who may know little to no English, feel welcome and comfortable at PFHS,” said junior Melissa Lopez, Vice President of ISHO.

International Night was initially requested by RBMS students during a Counseling Advisory meeting at the beginning of the school year. “Several students indicated that they wanted to have an International Night to celebrate all of the different cultures in the school.  So we thought ‘let’s make it happen’,” said Assistant Principal of RBMS, Juliet Kenny. 

International Night turned out to be a success with 30 countries represented and many people from the community showing up. Along with ISHO, Ruckus, Middle Eastern Club, String Quintet and French Club from PFHS participated.

With every success there will always be challenges. During Culture Night, ISHO experienced issues with the setting. “One of our main challenges the night of the event was space and time.  We did not anticipate the large turnout of 400+ community members. We were joined by five extracurricular clubs from PFHS, as well as several local community organizations. We had five performances scheduled.  We needed more space and more time,” said Kenny. 

However these setbacks did not stop RBMS and ISHO from turning the overall night into a major success.

“I think my favorite memory though would be seeing the students’ ownership and pride in their cultural heritage as they shared artifacts and fun facts from their culture, brought their favorite food and snacks to share, and wore traditional clothing that represented their cultures,” said Kenny

“We raised awareness of the club, and we saw a large representation of different cultures. There was music, food, clothes, dancing, and overall everyone had a great time, both staff and students,” said Lopez. 

Guests had an opportunity to watch the Kristin Burke Irish Dance group, a step team performance from PFHS Ruckus, River Bend student Anneecka Dadlani with a solo Indian dance, River Bend Guitar Club play international music, and an exciting tae-kwon-do demonstration from MBA Majest in Sterling.  

“Overall, whether you were visiting a table, voting on a door, or watching a performance, we hope people walked away having learned something new about a different culture and with an appreciation for the diverse community of River Bend,” said Kenny.