CAMPUS: A two week cultural exchange program of six students and one professor from Namur University, Belgium came to an end with a cultural event in the Xavier Hall on Thursday.
The students from Belgium shared their experiences and made presentations about their stay. A medley of songs were performed by the Indian Music Association and Christian Student Association (CSA).The College dance also performed a contemporary number. Principal Dr Fr Praveen Martis appreciated all the students for having adjusted to the Indian culture, climate, and food. He also recalled his experience of studying in Belgium.
The focus of the exchange program was to understand the differences in culture, lifestyle, and development between India and Belgium. Sharing her experience Valèrie Gils, a first year Law student at Namur University said, “The importance of living with a family [in India] is striking. Back in Belgium we are used to independent living. This experience has altered my view about India to a great extent.”
The Belgium students interacted with the different student representatives from All India Catholic University Federation (AICUF), National Cadet Corp (NCC), CSA, and the Student Council to better understand the various student activities.
Commenting on the initiative of educational institutions indulging in a cultural exchange, Prof. Benjamin, Department of International Relations, Namur University said, “A cultural trade makes a big difference in the life of a student. I am left intrigued after hearing such vivid and varied experiences of students and the effect it had on them. I am glad universities today are giving this cultural trade so much importance.”
As a part of their stay in India, the students spent a day at Marpu, an NGO in Ramasamudram, Andra Pradesh, working towards improving the issues relating to Dalit land rights and economic stability. The students also travelled to Mysore and Coorg where they visited major attractions like the Mysore Palace and the Namdroling, a Tibetan monastery.
Six students from the College will be visiting Namur University, Belgium for a similar exchange program on February 25.
-Gayatri Tandon (I MS COM)