Cultural Day is an annual activity created by the Department of Professional Exchange (DOPE) and the Department of Research Exchange (DORE) MSCIA UB which normally is carried out offline. However, this year, Cultural Day was held on Sunday, September 12th, 2021, as an online event due to the ongoing pandemic situation. This event aims to learn about cultural exchange and learn about its benefits as well as to motivate participants to take part in the IFMSA exchange program.

This year we added a new innovation called Batik's workshop which became our center of interest, where we drew Malangan batik which is designated as the typical batik of Malang, East Java.  Not only did we get to know the history of batik itself, but we also learned how to make Malangan batik patterns with their trademarks: Malangan masks, Malang monuments, and lotus flowers.  The incoming and local participants took part excitedly and at the end of the event, we also presented the best batik among the participants.  In this Cultural Day event, we also presented Indonesian culture from the five major islands in Indonesia.  The presentation was made interactively and was made even more interesting by showing videos of cultural performances. After that, we held a talk show with incomings from the Philippines and some of MSCIA's members that are international students from Malaysia. During this interactive talk show session, we talked about culture, pandemic situations, and even how the pandemic situation affected the two countries.

This event was made so that we can learn and have fun together in a cheerful atmosphere to make it not seem as formal and rigid. We also held a Cultural Sharing Session which was divided into two sessions called “Wonder Food” and “Drops the Beat”. During the Wonder Food session, we prepared traditional or in-house food/drinks/snacks to be introduced to all participants using a spin the wheel to choose the participant. The chosen ones then should describe and introduce the food that had been prepared in advance.  In this session, we were allowed to eat and drink together. The enthusiasm of the incomings and local participants were felt, from this session we also know that there are similarities in taste and even names for food between the countries, such as Lumpia, where both in Indonesia and The Philippines is used to refer to the same particular food.  Then, we entered the “Drop the Beat'' session. In this session, we also drew lots of incoming and local participants to sing songs in their respective regions. In both Wonder Food and Drop the Beat, all participants were expected to learn about the cultures of all countries involved -- in terms of food and traditional songs.

The series of events which started at 12.00 GMT+7 finally ended with the “Farewell Party” where we thanked the participants attending this event. We held awards including Best Participant, Best Dressed, Best Batik, and Best Campaign.  We also invited all participants to give messages and impressions of the Cultural Day event through Padlet. The event was closed with a documentation session and our gratitude for the participants. We hope that this event could be held again next year.  All sessions in the Cultural Day event did not fail to make us realize that the world we have is very large -- there is a natural beauty, culture, and even uniqueness each country has that will never run out. Through this event, we hope that the participants can be more grateful, appreciate the wealth of their respective countries and more importantly maintain it so that in the future we can still enjoy this diversity, as stated in our tagline, ‘unity in diversity for a better society. 


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