End of UNPAR International Student Conference 2013: A Memory for life!

Unfortunately, this wonderful conference had to come to an up. After a hectic day in Jakarta and some last workshops. the last day was made of all of our presentations. All the participants in the Global Terrorism Program were divided into 8 groups and we were assigned to present, in front of the whole assembly, what were the conclusions we could draw from the conference.

My group, composed of Chinese, Americans, Indonesians and I (French-Italian-Swedish) focused on explaining why different forms of terrorism required different solutions. After spending so many hours discussing issues like right-wind radicalism, Islamist extremism, lone-wolf terrorism, terrorism in Scandinavia and the consequences of death penalty, it seemed like an obvious end to our learning: speaking of one solution that would eradicate terrorism sounds inadequate and inappropriate.

But this conference, that gathered so many nationalities and different opinions, proved one point: citizens, at the grass roots level, have an enormous responsibility in their shoulders in the fight against terrorism: striving to oppose all the prejudices and false preconceptions that still are wrongly associated to some ethnic groups or religions. As Daniel Cohn-Bendit, a French-German MP of the European Parliament would put it: “Multi-culturalism, tolerance and acceptance for every individual, regardless of religion, ethnicity and sexual orientation are the real barriers against terrorism”.

The second conclusion that I would stress on at the end of this conference is all the love, friendship and care that I´ve received in so few days. In approximately seven days, I´ve met so many wonderful human beings and new friends. They have taken care of me like almost no one has ever done it before. And I wonder now how to give back what was freely given to me.

I want to especially thank Sindy, Azizah, Tiara and Haqqi, students at Parahyangan University in Bandung that took me out every single day, made me discover every of their preferred corners of Bandung, made me try delicious dishes and immersed me into the Indonesian culture, teaching me traditions, words, ways of living. Your attention to me is a priceless gift that I´ll always remember. Our discussions, our laughs, our differences have made me a richer human being.

I want to thank all the members of the Organizing Committee of the UNPAR International Student Conference 2013 for the awesome work they´ve put in into fixing every single detail of the event. All students, they woke up far before us and went to bed far after us just to make sure that we´ll enjoy our time. You all rock 🙂

 

I also want to particularly thank Anas, Merve, Mickael, Martin, Tejas, all my new International friends from every corner of this planet for being here for me. You all made me a better man! In one word: Just go to UNPAR International Student Conference 2014! 🙂

 

Being international…

Hey,

Here is the deal guys, being internatioal has its obvious benefits you get a broad network, learn about a new culture, explore new foods and spices, travel around and see nature or urban environments, and so on. You get a lot of positive impressions all around from being on exchange. But what does this really mean?

Here is an example of what being international can do for you…so during my last exchange in England I met lots of American students that I hung out with and we had a blast. So now when I am in the US I can actually visit these friends. This weekend I decided to go and visit my friend that I met in England, she lives about 2 hours by plane from here. I book the ticket and was off to see her. When I arrived she took me around the area showed me places that I probably would not have find by myself. Also I got the chance to hang with her cool family and eat some nice American dishes. Then we went to her friends place to watch the Super Bowl which was really cool to be able to experience the Super Bowl in an American home with Americans was priceless.

I wanna thank my friend, her family and her friends for showing me a good time. This is what being international is all about, this opportunity was because of the fact that we became friends in England.

So if you are unsure about applying to studies abroad, I am telling you don’t be unsure just do it as Nike would say because you will have the best time of your life hands down. So go out, explore, talk to a stranger, meet people, eat, drink, visit and most of all have fun with the experience. You can always come back home and it is better to have been out on exchange then regret it later in life!