The University of Texas-Pan American community will discuss the challenges of achieving global peace while taking part in festivities that celebrate cultures throughout the world during the 10th annual International Days Nov. 15-18, 2010.

The four-day event at UTPA is sponsored by the Office of International Programs (OIP).

“UTPA participates annually in this joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education to promote internationalism. UTPA students and scholars from around the world along with community members come together to participate in lectures, panel discussions, art/music events, cultural activities and so much more. The Office of International Programs views this event as an excellent opportunity to exchange ideas, celebrate and understand each other’s cultures,” said Dr. Yvonne T. Quintanilla, OIP director.

This year’s theme is “Achieving Global Peace,” and will feature keynote speaker Alfred Valenzuela, a retired U.S. Army major general, who will speak Nov. 15 from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Student Union Theater. Hispanic Business Magazine named Valenzuela one of the 100 most influential Hispanics. Valenzuela is also the recipient of the Humanitarian Service Medal.

The week will include several panel discussions obtaining and maintaining peace throughout the world, as well as an art exhibit from the International Museum of Art and Science at the University Gallery and film screenings. UTPA’s student group Artists Unanimous will have their works on display throughout the event.

On Thursday, Nov. 18, the OIP will have its Study Abroad Fair from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. that will highlight upcoming trips to several European countries, China, Morocco and Peru.

International Days will culminate with Cultural Night Nov. 18 at 6 p.m. in the student quad, featuring international food tastings, performances from the UTPA African Drumming Ensemble, UTPA Mariachis, as well as various University dance groups and dance groups from Vanguard Academy and the Mercedes Independent School District.

For more information and a complete schedule of events, visit the Office of International Program’s website (