Undeterred by biting wind chill, REEEC joined a number of university institutions and student clubs at the 2nd Travel Around the World on April 12th. This showcase of multifarious countries, cultures, food and dance from different regions and continents around the globe was organized as part of the annual International Week and was hosted by the International Student and Scholar Services and the Intensive English Institute. From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. students and university staff gathered at the tent space between Everitt and Engineering Hall to get their passports stamped for visiting the exhibit stands and to win prizes. This year’s highlights also included international performances by the Capoeira Club, Desafinado, and TASC Special Ops (Chinese Yo-Yo).
REEEC welcomed the approximately hundred visitors at our booth with trivia games. We carried players and interested bystanders on imaginary cruises along the Blue Danube, cycle tours across the scenic Baltics and luxury train rides on the Trans-Siberian Express across the Russian heartland. Prizes included coffee mugs and country tattoos from Eastern Europe, Russia and Central Asia but often our trivia champions preferred some good Russian candy. Besides raising awareness about the geography, cultural and historical richness of our region, REEEC also showcased the breadth of its educational programs, activities and resources. Thus, it buttressed interest among undergraduate students about its courses, MA program and its various opportunities for grants, travel abroad and language instruction.
Ultimately, the cold got to everybody’s bones. Participants and organizers scurried away at warp speed towards the warmth and comfort of their hearths and offices. Notwithstanding, Travel Around the World was the most captivating, fun and fitting conclusion to our International Week this year. Hopefully, next time our visitors will be reminded of the winter cold solely by the intoxicating images of turquoise ice on Lake Baikal as they stop there on their imaginary travel across Siberia.