Enactus World Cup: World Cultural Experience

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Have you ever wondered what happens at the World Cultural Experience but haven’t had the opportunity to attend? Two of our students who are KPMG bursary recipients, Katie Nolan from NUI Galway and HonMan Wan from Maynooth University share their experience of attending the event. The World Cultural Experience invites all attendees to experience the diverse culture within the Enactus network as students from each Enactus country display their native traditions and customs.

‘This year’s World Cultural Experience took place on October 10th, at the end of the second day of the Enactus World Cup. This allowed teams a much needed break from competition and enabled attendees to channel their energy to celebrate all countries involved in Enactus.

As you enter the fair, you are struck by an overwhelming sense of awe.  The room is brimming with different cultures. Vibrant colours surround you from flags, native clothing, jewellery, crafts and foods which are accompanied by a multitude of merry sounds – the Tunisian’s being the loudest! It was nothing like either of us had ever experienced before. Although all the teams are in competition, inside the fair the sense of unity between nations is astounding. Hundreds of people are in congregation to express their patriotism and celebrate their cultural diversity with others.

As you walked around the various stalls of the different countries, you could see how proud each team were to show off their culture and traditions to the rest of the world. We were spoiled for choice: the USA were handing out native – American beaded necklaces, India provided beautiful hand-drawn Henna tattoos, Canada gave everyone a shot of their delicious maple syrup and the UK encouraged people to take selfies with the ’Queen’. Great entertainment was provided by the South Koreans who played tunes on their traditional drums and the Tunisian’s kept up their chanting and undeniably, their reputation as being one of the most energetic nations!

Ireland was well represented as we took it in turns to stay at our stall and share stories about Ireland, what being Irish means to us and teaching some Irish words to other students from across the world! We were able to hand out a lot of goodies too as we were sponsored by a variety of Irish companies, but as we are famous for our tea, we were able to hand out some Barry’s & Bewley’s tea! After getting a taster of the Emerald Isle, up next was a GAA teaser. Watching people from all corners of the globe came together to try and puc around a sliotar provided great entertainment.

As we reflect on our time at this exhibition of culture, it is very difficult to find words to describe the multitude of feelings we experienced. It was an honour for us to represent Ireland as this is an extremely unique experience, which words cannot do justice. We cannot wait to see what next year has in store for us!’

A huge thank you to all of the companies who supported us with merchandise for the World Cultural Experience: Barry’s Tea, Bewley’s, Butlers Chocolates, Fáilte Ireland, Fulfill Nutrition, Network Cafe and Tourism Ireland.

Liam Redmond