United in Diversity Week, 8-14 April 2019

Since the very beginning of the College of Europe, the organisation of national weeks has been one of the most cherished College traditions that gives us the chance to show our fellow-students what makes our cultures so different and unique.  As there is only a limited number of weeks, some countries are inevitably left out. To rectify this, this year we decided to pioneer an idea and join forces with all students whose countries are less represented — both big and small from very diverse world regions — and organise a week under the motto "United in Diversity".

We are a team of 25 students from countries as diverse as Albania, Malta, the United States, the UK, India, Bulgaria, Azerbaijan and Canada and invite you to join the festivities of our inter-national United in Diversity Week between 8 and 14 April 2019. We wish to dedicate our project to the celebration of everything that unites us in our differences by highlighting the diversity of talents, thoughts, backgrounds, points of view and, above all, individuals that we have in our small yet vibrant community.  

On Monday, 8 April we have prepared a special musical surprise for you during lunch in the canteen. Besides, the Embassy of Azerbaijan to Belgium invites you to tea and freshly-made traditional sweets.  

On Wednesday, 10 April we offer you wine and cheese from several countries in the Dijver Foyer at 20h, an open microphone and several short videos.  Let's chill out in a short break from writing our essays and theses!

On Thursday, 11 April, we are going to offer you a festive lunch that shows how well culinary differences from several world regions can complement one another.  If you have any dietary requirements, please, contact our culinary team manager iulita.osichenko [at] coleurope.eu (Iulita OSICHENKO).

In the afternoon, the UK Mission to the European Union hosts British afternoon high tea at Dijver between 14h and 17h.

Between 19h and 21h the Bruges Chapter of the 89 Initiative, a pan-European think-do tank based at the European Institute of the London School of Economics and Political Science hosts a Keynote Speech by Mr Guy VERHOFSTADT - a Member of the European Parliament, former Prime Minister of Belgium and the European Parliament's representative in the Brexit negotiations.

The rest of the evening will offer many more surprises in the Yellow Pubmarin, including the possibility to dance to beats from all the countries represented at the College mixed in a DJ set and a special competition hosted by a transatlantic team

On Saturday, 13 April 2019, get ready for an exciting day! The 2019 Hendrik Brugmans Memorial Cup takes place between 12h and 18h. Following the football tournament, from 19h30 onwards in one of the most beautiful and historic buildings in Bruges - the Joseph Ryelandtzaal - located within a few minutes on foot from Oude Zak - we are going to gather under one roof all the talents (and multi-talents) of the College. There will be special surprises, creativity galore, high spirits, refreshments from several world regions, gifts. Local host families have also been invited. The party will follow in the Yellow Pubmarin afterwards, from 10 pm onwards. Please, register for the event here.

There is an exciting line-up of performances yet you are still welcome to join! Come and express yourself on stage in the stunning Ryelandtzaal on Saturday night— playing music, singing, dancing, drama, reading or reciting your favourite poem in any language, stand-up comedy, making a fire show, all of these at once, or any other creative performance that comes to mind. Send us a message about how you wish to participate (who, what, how long, and if you need something specific)  to mariya.triondzhieva [at] coleurope.eu (Mariya TRIONZHIEVA) & perrine.rossi [at] coleurope.eu (Perrine ROSSI), and let’s embark on this adventure together! Our Salon des Arts will be co-hosted by la Voix du College

On Sunday morning, 14 April, a special yoga & mindfulness workshop takes place in Astrid Park, if the weather is favourable or at a nearby residence co-hosted by the College psychologist Chloe GOETINCK, Beyond Belief - the inter-religious group of the College and the Indian Peacock Society. For more information, please contact anmol.sodhi-kaur [at] coleurope.eu (Anmol SODHI KAUR).

During the organisation of our project, we have enjoyed collaborating across different cultures and wish to turn this week into the most memorable and inclusive one, during which we can send a powerful message: that we cannot be divided by national or cultural boundaries but stay united in our diversity!

For more information, please contact tihomir.tsenkulovski [at] coleurope.eu (Tihomir TSENKULOVSKI) or perrine.rossi [at] coleurope.eu (Perrine ROSSI)