I have had the privilege to attend an international festival. The international festivals can be about music, film and drama among other functions. However, despite the assorted functions that the international festivals tackle, the themes addressed remain the same across the functions. The themes addressed on such international festivals touch on cultural, social, economic, cultural and political issues in a way that the themes addressed transcend geographical borders.
As an international event, it is attended by students from across the globe. Every international festival, which is held annually, touch on one main theme. To cite an example, the theme can be about global health. The adjective “global” implies that the issue is addressed from an international perspective; addressing it beyond a national context. All aspects of the subject are addressed in their relevance to humankind.
Usually, for the international students to participate, they need to fill an application form. The international festival organizers inform the international students on the location and time that the international festival will be held (Atlantische Initiative, 2007). To appreciate the great efforts that the international students perform of uniting the community, the participants are given an opportunity to win awards. The international student participants are also given an opportunity to showcase their talents; have a mutual interaction with their peers from diverse cultural backgrounds; and be inspired by their counterparts. All the participants in internal student festivals must currently be students but some organizations such as NGOs are given an opportunity to tell their message to the public.
There are many international students who apply for participation in the international festivals. However, since not all can be accommodated, they are processes to select which students will participate and which will not. Some organizers give various topics on the year’s theme and require the students to write essays. Then, the choose the essay that is the best.
In such festivals, there are students from different cultural backgrounds and social status. The students can be from rich or poor backgrounds. Usually, there are international students who may have qualified for the festival, yet, they cannot afford the expenses. Mostly, the organizers offer financial support to such students. Often, the sponsorship is partial. So as to avoid being in a fix, the participants are advised to seek other means of financing their way to the festivals. There are organizers who cater for meals and accommodation and in some cases, the festival participant stays with a host who caters for bed and breakfast. Also, once at the festival workshop, the participants may be provided with lunch and dinner, either, free of charge or at reasonable costs. On the contrary, there are international student festivals that allow the family members and friends to accompany the participants at their own expenses.
The participants of the festival may be drawn from different geographical regions and cultures. Thus, in such a case, they may be speaking different languages. There may be a language barrier. To ensure that the participants communicate with each other with no hindrances, there is a specific language that is chose as a means of communication. This chosen language, which is often the most known by the participants in general, becomes the lingua franca. For instance, since English is spoken by many people in the world, it may be the lingua franca in an international festival involving participants such as from U.S., Africa, Asia, and Europe.
Atlantische Initiative. (2007). Today’s Transatlantic Agenda is Global. Retrieved on April 23, 2012 from http://www.atlantic-community.org/index/events/view/International_Student_Festival_in_Trondheim,_Norway,_11-20_February_2011