International Student Day: A Day to Celebrate Global Citizenship

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International Student Day is an international observance of the student community, held annually on 17 November. Originally commemorating the Czech universities which were stormed by Nazis in 1939 and the students who were subsequently killed and sent to concentration camps, it is now marked by a number of universities, sometimes on a day other than 17 November, as a nonpolitical celebration of the multiculturalism of their international students.


On 17 November 1939, the Nazis stormed the Charles University in Prague in response to student protests against the German occupation of Czechoslovakia. Nine students were executed and over 1,200 were sent to concentration camps. All Czech universities and colleges were closed.

In 1941, the International Union of Students (IUS) established 17 November as International Students' Day to commemorate the events in Prague and to show solidarity with students around the world who were fighting for freedom and democracy.


International Student Day is now celebrated in many countries around the world. It is a day to celebrate the contributions of international students to their communities and to raise awareness of the challenges they face.

How to celebrate

There are many ways to celebrate International Student Day. Here are a few ideas:

  • Organize a cultural event. This could be a potluck dinner, a performance, or an art exhibition. It's a great way to learn about different cultures and to meet other international students.
  • Volunteer your time. There are many organizations that support international students. You could volunteer to tutor students, help them with their English language skills, or simply be a friend.
  • Educate yourself. Learn more about the challenges that international students face and how you can support them. You could read articles, watch documentaries, or talk to international students about their experiences.
  • Spread the word. Share information about International Student Day with your friends and family. Encourage them to learn more about the challenges that international students face and how they can support them.

No matter how you choose to celebrate, International Student Day is a day to show appreciation for the contributions of international students and to raise awareness of the challenges they face.

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