With graduation less than a week away, we thought we would reflect on the past two years at the Wake Forest University Schools of Business by highlighting some of the best events and moments we had. We'll post one highlight daily this week, starting with the annual International Food Festival, held every fall in the quad.
The scene on campus is quite different when the International Student Association hosts its annual food festival at Worrell Professional Center.You know something is different the moment you enter the quad. Tables are set up on all sides, each giving off pleasing aromas from dishes that students often spend all day preparing.
The event serves dual purposes. First, it provides an enjoyable social atmosphere early in the academic year. But perhaps more importantly, it draws attention to the amazing diversity among the student population: India, Korea, Egypt, and Trinidad have been among the many nations represented at past events. It was interesting to see so many people - faculty, MBA, MA and MSA students - crowding around tables enjoying the food.
The best part of the festival involves interacting with the other students as they proudly present their dishes. One could easily construct an international meal, ranging from Korean barbecue and a Peruvian lamb dish to terrific desserts that included plantains from West Africa and carrot halwa from an Indian team. Nothing at this event disappoints!
You walk away respecting both the hard work and culture behind everything produced by the ISA students!
Another part of the program that fascinated me was how the ISA builds its cooking teams. Each group is diverse, so certain students are able to learn about other cultures within their programs and in the ISA itself. Learning extended beyond food. Most tables were equipped to talk about their cultures and one team went an extra step by wearing costumes to further the experience.
The entire event lasts less than three hours, but many people hang around to socialize and enjoy the terrific weather. There is ample time to make multiple trips around the booths (though not much food remains at the end of the night).