Crossing Cultural Divides & Having Tons of Fun  

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International Day 2012 Universit√† Degli Studi Della Tuscia

This semester I interned with my study abroad program (USAC) in Italy. My major duties were to assist the program director to promote and engage the student body in cultural events. Demographically the University was made up of a large native Italian student body, as well as the European and American study abroad students respectively. One of the major events USAC hosted was International Day. This day was filled with activities set to provide awareness among the various culture groups. Fall semester I had participated and was surprised at how many different nationalities were represented at Tuscia such as Poland, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Brazil, America, the Czech Republic, and of course Italy among many others.

Now, having spent a semester already at Tuscia I had somewhat of a feel for campus life. What I noticed was that there was a distinct divide between the various cultural groups on campus. Walking into the student area you would find the Italians hanging out with Italians, as well as the Polish and the Americans sticking to their own cultural groups. My goal for this event was to bring the students together. I wanted to create activities that ensured that the various groups integrated and conversed with one another, and of course have fun. 

We first divided the participants into groups as they walked into the theater, snapped some pictures by our map and began the event with some great activities. We had a hello workshop where the members of the groups had to introduce themselves to one another in there own native language. 

"Annyeong Nanam Cariela-ya" 
Hello my name is Cariela in Korean, Thanks Yu Jin Kim ^_^

Other activities were the animal noise game, where we asked various students what noise certain animals made. You'd be surprised at what noises are given to animals in different cultures. Then we had an Italian Gestures slideshow. After we had students work out a skit using only body language. Lastly, we had a music game, where we played clips of artist from around the world and they had to identify the artist and country. It was a lot of fun! Then we had a breaktime filled with yummy food and we ended the night with live music. A local band and a group of Brazillian students singing the popular song "Ai Se Eu Te Pego" by Michel Telo.

Stefano Pizzetti: Director of USAC Viterbo

The Dean of the Language college and USAC
Dogs in America say woof  woof, but in Europe they go Bow Wow

Gesture skits, it's all about that body language

Rockin' out!

All in all it was a successful event. Goals were met and the participants had a good time. I'm so fortunate to have been apart of it. Thanks for reading!