Volume 1, Issue 1
Blender 1 world — so many different people In this first edition of Blender, you will find a full report of this year’s Lessius Mechelen International Week, that was held from 9 till 13 May. Vivid pictures and smashing articles make you relive the week as if you were there yourself. 32 foreign exchange students were welcomed this week by 13 female Lessius students. They came from all over Europe to participate in this cultural blend. Throughout the week, different students with different cultural backgrounds, merged together.
Afroditi Theodoridis Agnes Kilich Agnese Paunina Anna Kubanek Annelieke Madou Avalon Verrijken Britt Duysters Céline Ruytjens
Prejudices were banned from the school. Eyes were opened, true colors were revealed and they saw that it was good.
Christelle Mindome Daiva Gasparaviciute Evgenia Shevtszova Fabiana Molina Quero Femke Boone Femke Ruttens Frida Niska Katrien Hulsbosch Kübra Zorba Laura Loos Mareen Schoenfelder Maria Teresa Clara Sauri Martina Smekalova Mehalet Yared Natalie Behnert Nina Dongmo Tsangue Pedro Duarte Sandra Gonález Madrid Stéphanie Van Buyten Thai Binh Ho Van
Content: Different nationalities came together One sunny day in Brussels Smile Marketing in a nutshell To teach, and to be taught
p.2 p.3 p.4-5 p.6-7 p.7-8
Viktor Ignatiev Yasmine Rymenants Yonca Gül
Different nationalities came together Kübra about her religion: I believe with my heart and it doesn’t matter if you believe. As long as you respect me, I will respect you.
Yonca about veils at school: We don’t have to wear a veil at our school, it’s even forbidden.
The international week started on 9 Mai
know each other, there was a little recep-
2011 and lasted till 14 Mai 2011. This week there was a mix
tion. Afroditi Theodoridis and Thai Binh Ho Van were pointed out to take care of the
between Belgian and international students.
It was pretty exciting for the IRM students because they were wondering how the week would go, what they would do and
The international students also brought something delicious from their native coun-
who they would meet. But the international
try. The international students also brought
students probably had the same feeling.
something delicious from their native country. There was more than enough food and
Sneaky students When the IRM students were setting out the hall, the teachers put the cards on a table. We could read the name and the group of the student on these cards. There were different groups: there was the French fries group, the horse group, the asparagus group …. What did you expect? The IRM students took a quick peek at these cards to see who would be in their group, of course! But they couldn’t even pronounce most names so actually they did not know anything more. Food, drinks and hot boys & girls … what else do you need? The first international students arrived in small groups at around 4 o’clock. To begin the week and to get to
(alcoholic) beverages so everybody could taste and try something from another country. During the reception, Mrs Van Daele delivered a speech and that was the real start of the international week. Every group had its own table and after the reception they sat together. In the beginning, the communication between the students was a bit stiffly and everyone was a bit shy. Luckily, this did not last long so there soon was a good atmosphere at every table.
One sunny day in Brussels The 11th of May we all woke up very early,
one of the best chocolate makers in the
too early maybe, but in the end it was worth it. We spent an entire day in Brussels, the
world, Pierre Marcolini, we visited the House of Mercedes where we saw some
capital of Europe and much more. At
expensive cars we all would like to have,
around 9 o’clock we went to the European
and of course we visited many other things
Commission where we had an Italian man explain us how the European Union works.
such as Manneke and Jeanneke Pis.
You could see that he cared a lot about his
Social Chatter Some of us went home early, but others stayed and went shopping a little bit. Others went to a bar to have a nice cold Belgian beer. It was a good end of a hot and sunny day. It was the perfect day to get to know each other a little better. On Monday and Tuesday we had been so busy with our assignments, we had not gotten the time to talk about who we are. But Brussels brightened everybody’s mood and we could talk and laugh in a free way.
presentation and about us, listening. Of course everybody wanted to take pictures by the huge map of Europe in the main hall, so they could show where they came from. In the building of the European Parliament we also took pictures with the flags. It is nice to see how proud everybody is of their own nationality, and how we still feel European.
Mountains in Brussels Of course this was very interesting, but the best part was yet to come. In groups, everybody went to eat something in the centre. At 3 o’clock we all met again at the ‘Kunstberg’, one of the seven ‘mountains’ of the city. There we had a Belgian guide show us the most important points in Brussels. Even for us, Belgian students, it was very interesting because he explained a lot that we did not know yet. We saw the shop of
One baby, coming up! And if our dear Thai Binh gets pregnant and we see it in the next 9 months, of course we will let you know. But let’s hope it will not come that far. The wish I personally made when touching the statue came already true. I had a wonderful time with you and if I could do it again, I would.
Did you know that… … there also is a urinating dog in Brussels? His name is Zinneke (bastard dog in the dialect of Brussels).
Did youknow that… … Manneke Pis has over 700 costumes?
During the conference
ar ive c s n e y exp A ver
g kin a M
es cak n pa
Marketing in a nutshell Sandra about Belgium: I love Spain it’s my home, but Belgium became very imporant to me too. So I’ll be back!
The week got personal when Stéphanie turned 20 on the 10th of May. Apparantly, singing ‘Happy Birthday’ is known in every country.
Marketing. Those people who feel their eye-
cult than it needs to be.)
lids immediately going weak, I will already quickly jolt awake. Because it is not just an-
The importance of going global to local and
other boring subject, no, there's so much
from the group, who with hindsight prefers
more to it. You can learn how you should
to remain anonymous, had her own applica-
introduce a product, how you can improve the image of your company and you can
tion of this theory. I quote :
learn how people think and how companies
and Ann in your campaign, because these
react accordingly. So, a very enriching ex-
are common names. But then, in Turkey
you need to switch the names to something
Anyway, back to the point: marketing is fun.
like Fatima of course.”
Add to this some students from IRM, a num-
It may sound a bit superficial, but she un-
ber of foreign students and a commission
derstood the essence. The product should
given by Procter & Gamble, and you get a cheery gang ready for the challenge that the
be as close as possible to the consumers, because it is the only way you can win their
international week will offer.
trust. Even when they don’t really need
vice versa was also explained. A student
“Here in Belgium you will talk about Sophie
your product, as a marketer you should be
How it all started… Tuesday, May 10, Philippe Gysen who is the business leader of Gillette, gave an introduction about marketing. By means of some examples it was once again made clear how much the female sex - in my opinion superior one- differs from the male sex. (Who the hell knew how much of a difference there is in the image when it comes to an Audi or a BMW? If it has leather seats and seat heating, then what difference does it make? Men .. always making it more diffi-
able to convince people together with your team that they are in need of it. And that is exactly what the students were about to prove in different teams. The assignment was that they had to connect a product of P & G with a charity. This had to be properly worked out, yet still feasible, but most importantly, it had to convince the jury.
A few trips later … … the groups came back together, because after all that beer tasting and extensive din-
ners, there was still some work to be done.
school wouldn’t be Lessius Mechelen, if we
And I must be honest, in the classroom
didn’t go out with a bang. For that reason
where these minds overheated by creativity
the two best teams received a price. But the
were, the words 'work' and 'presenting'
very best team, which consisted of Britt
were given a whole new dimension. The
Duysters, Avalon Verrijken, Frida Niska and
school closed its doors at 19.00 ‘o clock in the evening but the students remained un-
Maria Teresa Clara Saura, had a real neat presentation of the link between the elec-
stoppable. Although, with the prospect of
tric toothbrushes from Oral-B and their goal
delicious French fries they were quite
to help people with a cleft palate. In other
quickly prepared to say their computer screens goodbye.
words, and I simply can’t put it better than they have:
Anna about Polish food: I am shocked to hear that Belgians think Polish food is no good! It is … we have great meat!!
“A brighter smile for a brighter world”
All stories come to an end ... ... and therefore this mission too. But our
To teach, and to be taught This year’s Lessius International Week has
to really start enjoying each other’s com-
been a great experience for all of us, I truly
pany. We found that we had more in com-
believe this. We were given the opportunity
mon than we thought, for which we have a
to learn about different cultures, and teach
lot of American TV-series to thank. But that
others about ours. I think it’s safe to say
was really just a conversation starter.
that we have all learned a lot from the time
After a while you could really feel that we
we’ve spent together.
were starting to get to know each other on a more personal level. And although we had
Thank God for American TV I must admit we weren’t that keen on the idea of spending our evenings with the foreign exchange students, instead of sitting at home, probably in front of the TV or behind the computer. But it didn’t take long for us
been divided into different groups, we got to know the people from the other groups too, maybe even more than the ones in our own.
Viktor about living abroad: It’s not easy to live in another country for a year, but in the end it’s an unforgettable experience.
Nobody’s the same, but we’re no differ-
‘completely different worlds’, we have
ent I believe that the most valuable lesson this week was that, although we all had different backgrounds and cultures, that didn’t stop us from becoming real friends. Everyone’s always talking about how different cultures can cause barriers in communication between people, but we didn’t experience that at all. Of course there were conversations about cultural differences, but never true discussions. And that was a good thing, I think. There already are enough cultural discussions going on in this world. So although we come from what some people call
proven that we can all get along fine; and there really just is one world we’re living in. I know now that, no matter where you’re from, what you believe in; no matter what language you speak or how you look… in some way, we all are so much alike. I think, in the end, we are all looking for the same thing: somewhere to belong. I’d like to give a special thanks to everyone who has made this week possible; to the exchange students who have been GREAT and to my class mates for being such awesome friends! Thanks!
Made by: Annelieke Madou Femke Boone Katrien Hulsbosch Laura Loos