AIESEC’s World Café Is Here—Where Are You?
The youth today is on a steady path of embracing their backgrounds and gracefully accepting their identities. While there are some who fearlessly bring their opinions to the table, a lot of others are unable to do this. In this ever-progressing society, a lot of people have taken the responsibility to stand up for those who are not able to voice their opinions and encourage them to speak up. World Café, organised by AIESEC, was yet another attempt at an open discussion aimed to give students a platform to answer some of the world’s most challenging concerns.
The event commenced with a brief explanation about the tasks and their rules. Participants formed teams of five with one member as the host of the table. Every group was given about ten minutes to answer a problem statement. After the stipulated time, everyone except the host would join a different group for other problem statements. There were a total of five problem statements, and the discussion enabled students to voice their opinions while interacting with others from various colleges of MAHE. The problems focused on topics such as misogyny, LGBTQ rights, and the recent Indo-Pakistan tensions. ADA dramatics also performed their award winning act in Hindi and shed light on the issues such as bullying, abuse and suicide in an unconventional manner.
Dr Veena Maben, Deputy Director of Student Affairs, was one of the guests at the event. She appreciated AIESEC for their efforts in bringing students from across MAHE together. She also spoke about MAHE’s efforts in spreading awareness about mental health and helping students deal with such problems. Further, she talked about the importance of students helping others that are finding it difficult to cope and deal with mental health. Tarun Asthana, a member of the student support group, spoke about being open and the importance of having the ability to be a good listener. He also touched upon the stigma of therapy and the need to educate society to get rid of these misconceptions in his talk. Following this, Gowri Bhat, a student at MIT, sang a few motivational songs about standing up for ourselves.
While there were no novel solutions to the problem statements given, the event got students thinking and helped them network with different people. The participants had the opportunity to sit at a space brimming with different perspectives enabling them to broaden their outlook on things. “It was very well organised. The only drawback was that the event started late. The idea of talking about real issues with strangers was a good idea, and it was eye-opening,” said Andrea Gonsalves, an MCOD’s student.
Image Credits: The Photography Club, Manipal