2015 International Education Week Highlights
International Education Week took place this year from November 16-20. We are so proud of our 2015-2016 students, who went above and beyond our requirements! Thanks to your hard work, which included over 400 presentations during the month of November, over 15,700 people in your host communities throughout the U.S. experienced the cultural enrichment of IEW. While Ayesha from Pakistan made the most presentations--20 during the week of IEW--17% of our students made more than 3 presentations. We encourage you to continue making cultural presentations throughout the year if you have the opportunity!
We encourage students to make presentations to groups of at least 10 people, but Al-Hada from the Philippines had the biggest reach--she presented to over 1,300 people in her host community. In fact, in November, 31% of our students presented to over 100 people, and 11% of our students presented to over 500 people. However, we also believe that presentations to smaller groups can be very rewarding, and we would like to acknowledge the effort that went into each presentation, regardless of the audience size. Way to go, students!
International Education Contest Winners:
We received so many submissions for our contests this year, and it was not easy to pick the winners.We have notified these individuals via email, but here are highlights from the winning presentations.
Best PowerPoint Presentation
1st place: Milos (A-SMYLE-Serbia)
2nd place: Nili (YES-Albania)
Best Artistic Response
1st place: Ayesha (YES-Pakistan): She created a video that included images of Pakistan and a montage of her IEW presentations.
2nd place: Daniela (ExCEL-Lithuania): She created a fun, interactive presentation about Lithuania that included common questions she's received about her home country.
Best Creative (Non-PowerPoint) Presentation
1st place: Ben-Badz (YES-Philippines): His presentation included so many elements, from food to souvenirs. However, we loved that during his presentation, he surprised his audience with a traditional tribal dance called the Pangalay before closing with a famous patriotic Filipino song!
2nd place: Yuliya (FLEX-Ukraine): She treated her audience to a Ukrainian folk dance, along with delicious-looking traditional pancakes.
1st place: Nikita (FLEX-Kazakhstan)
2nd place: Esther (YES-Indonesia)
Best Written Response
1st place: Ljubica (YES-Macedonia)
"Staying there, in front of the audience, talking about my country, was the best feeling I’ve ever had in my entire life. Educating and introducing the Americans with something extremely new, something they’ve never seen before, was definitely unforgettable. The point of this experience is not just for me to grow as a person, but also to enrich the knowledge of other people and spread their point of view. ... The most exciting part of the entire presentation were the dances. I gathered the people and in 20 minutes I taught them how to dance three different traditional dances: Pravoto, Pajdushko and Sitnoto. This was a real proof that words can’t express what the heart can feel, because just by feeling the beat and trying to dance on it created a lasting mark on their heart that will never disappear. Maybe after a few years they won’t remember anything about the history of Macedonia, but they will definitely remember the fun dances and cheerful music."
2nd place: Houssam (YES-Lebanon)
"I didn't know that I know that much about my country, I didn't know that I can change people's minds in 30 minutes, I didn't know that people are that interested to know about my country . People in my school and community now knows the true image of my country, I really liked when they told me 'it's not what the media showed us.' As an exchange student they keep saying that you’re an ambassador. I didn't know what does that mean until I did my presentations; “yes” you are an ambassador; you are the mirror of your country; you literally reflect the image of your country to people, so what I did is showing the real beauty of my country I showed them things that was opposite to everything they think about everything that the media showed them and it was not true. ... Being an ambassador is not only a job; it’s an activity that we do it every day."
Pictured: Nouredine (YES-Cameroon)