It takes a ‘Global Village’ to raise a cultured campus
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AIESEC, a global student-run volunteer organization, hosted a “Global Village” at Suffolk University Thursday to unify the many cultures across campus for a common cause.
At the event, Students gathered to learn of leadership opportunities and celebrate heritage through food and conversation.
Pop music echoed from speakers and booths lined up against the walls of Sawyer 410A/B. The first booth next to the sign-in desk was a makeshift photo booth that featured brightly colored decorations on a whiteboard. Each booth offered a cuisine from a different country, such as the popular green tea bars given out at the Korean culture club table. Colorful pieces of origami were created at the Japanese booth; paintings and miniature sculptures were displayed at the El Salvador booth.
AIESEC is a global association that allows young adults to explore cultural understanding and learning in order to flourish through different leadership platforms such as internships and volunteering. The fields AIESEC mainly focuses on include marketing, business, technology, language and engineering.
Rina Hirate, a junior Information Systems and Operation Management major, is the vice president of outgoing global volunteering at AIESEC’s Boston branch.
“We believe that, by offering internships through a global program, students can learn and develop leadership skills. So that’s why we offer options like six weeks in a summer program and also entrepreneurships,” said Hirate. “For the volunteer program we partner with the United Nations. By 2020 they want to solve over 20 problems such as social poverty, education equality, issues like that.”
AIESEC’s mission statement is to generate peace and potential in humankind through the empowerment of young people. There are six core values that AIESEC operates by: striving for excellence, demonstrating integrity, activating leadership, living diversity, acting sustainably, and enjoying participation.
Hirate personally hopes to influence young individuals to let go of any preexisting biases and stigmas they may have.
“I want students to know more about the world, outside of this country,” she said. “Sometimes students think that staying in the same country is better since this country is safe but I want students to know that by going abroad they can learn more and they can have a life changing experience.”
With more than 2,400 universities represented worldwide, Boston is a small chapter within the organization. “AIESEC Boston is a city chapter because of the close proximities of universities,” said Hirate. “This organization partners with mainly Suffolk, Emerson, Boston University, Northeastern, and Babson. They are also available worldwide in places like Brazil, Colombia and Italy.”
UNICEF partnered with AIESEC as they held a booth at Global Village. Claudia Buruca, a senior who majors in applied legal studies and minors in Spanish, is the president of the UNICEF club on campus. Andres Rodriguez, a sophomore PPE major with a minor in sociology, is the treasurer.
Buruca said the mission is to “raise awareness in the Suffolk community about issues that children face worldwide including refugees, human trafficking and access to clean water.” UNICEF hoped to promote their new initiative of local volunteering while aligning themselves with similar clubs.
“We provide opportunities for our members such as volunteering through the center for community service and engagement,” said Buruca. “We invite speakers such as the Boston Global Citizenship Fellow who works for the UNICEF Boston Regional office as well as hold meetings that are educational and focus on open discussions that will hopefully bring a new perspective to new members.”
“We are trying to raise awareness through ads. In the month of March, you will see flyers around the school that will be located where students use water, such as bathrooms and bubblers,” said Rodriguez. “The flyers will have facts about water use throughout the world.”