November 13, 1982.
On this day, the IUPUI Student Activities Board and Universitarios Hispanos co-sponsored the second annual Noche Latina event, celebrating all things Latino/Latina. The festivities took place in the Union Building cafeteria, which for years was the scene of music, dancing, and merriment on the IUPUI campus. the event was open to the public. Event organizers aimed to present the richness of Hispanic culture.
The evening commenced with a dinner featuring "traditional Latin fare," for which attendees forked over $6.50. Alberto Torchinsky, the dean of Latino Affairs at Indiana University-Bloomington, spoke on Hispanics in higher education. Afterwards, a show of the richness of Hispanic culture included music, dancers in traditional costumes, poetry, and more. Pina Colada, a group of IUPUI students from Venezuela, performed, as did the Jaime Morales Orchestra and Island Express.
As well, students, staff, and faculty could see displays of Hispanic art in the Union Building and in the Hideaway, the cafeteria/hang-out spot in the basement of then University Library (today's Taylor Hall).
IUPUI created the Office of International Services in 1978 to recruit students from around the world to attend IUPUI. Administrators worked to enrich the cultural diversity of the campus and enhance learning and cultural exchange. An October 6, 1982 article in the Sagamore, the IUPUI student newspaper, quoted Edwin Brown, Jr., associate dean for student services in the IU School of Medicine, who at the time administered international admissions for all of IUPUI, to say that universities need a rich mixture of cultural backgrounds. "For instance, a political science course is more exciting if you have students from other countries to share, first hand, how their governments operate," he said. Furthermore, "We have an obligation to educate people from other countries who do not have the same educational opportunities as we."
Today, the Office of International Affairs works to bring students from around the world to IUPUI. As well, OIA sends IUPUI students to study in all corners of the globe. To learn more about the history of international exchange at IUPUI, please consult the records in IUPUI Special Collections and Archives firstname.lastname@example.org.