Story by Ashley Traylor, Staff writer
Racers for Christ hosted its annual international market Aug. 11 to distribute school supplies and get to know Murray State’s international students.
“It pretty much goes back to our theme of Racers for Christ: ‘Loving God, Loving Others’ and sharing the love of Christ to Murray State and that’s one way we do that is by loving on international students,” said Jaycee Cribbs, sophomore from Madisonville, Kentucky.
International students are invited to the Racers for Christ center to get free school supplies, bed sheets, hangers, toilet paper, rice cookers and other supplies they might need for the semester.
Abhishek Nelson Thatikonda, an international student from Hyderabad, India said he has been involved in the international market for two years. He said it helps the international students because it can be difficult to buy supplies because of the increased expense compared to the cost of supplies in their country.
Thatikonda said he appreciated the convenience of the market as many international students don’t know where to buy supplies or how to find transportation around Murray.
The University Church of Christ in Murray collaborates with Racers for Christ to put on the market each year. Church members can give an offering to go toward the campus ministry. Some items were donated by members of the church, Morgan Douglas, junior from Cincinnati, said.
Becca Whitman, junior from Louisville, Kentucky, said the international market is beneficial to international students for many reasons other than just receiving free supplies.
“It benefits them because this may be their first interaction with an American, so it gets them adapted to us,” Whitman said. “They are like sponges; they want to learn from us and see what we do here in America and American culture.”
Murray State Racers for Christ have held the event for at least five years, Cribbs said.
International students are allowed to come through the line once, but near the end of the day, they are able to come through the line again and pick up the extra supplies.
The students involved in Racers for Christ had the role of supervising the tables and making sure each students got one of each item laid out on the tables, but also they tried to get to know the students, Douglas said.
“There were students that came from Ecuador and South Korea, to Australia and Germany,” Whitman said. “It is crazy that they came to Murray.”