At the core of IE university lies diversity and a global mindset. An educational institution that withholds tens of different nationalities, cultures, and perspectives. Walking down the halls of the IE Tower resembles strolling through the airport with your carry-on. An additional foreign language enters your ears step by step. This multiculturalism sets the stage for the perfect opportunity to promote friendly competition and the celebration of each nation. The 2022 Qatar World Cup at IE bears a unique opportunity only available in contexts such as ours.
For now, the most evident action by the university is placing a watching room in the -4 for all the World Cup games. A TV is set up to play all the games in front of a limited seating arrangement. I have had the opportunity to attend this event, which was quite fun. A small atmosphere is created, making the experience more immersive and enjoyable. However, the seating opportunities were finite, and many had to stand in order to be able to see. Nevertheless, the student body is enjoying this opportunity and many seem to be taking advantage of it.
However, there seems to be limited planning and consideration for scheduling issues and games. Evidently, no one expects classes to be canceled entirely, but the alums would much appreciate some institutional wiggle room. This is an event that occurs every four years and may be the only opportunity for many to see their nation represented on the world stage. A notorious portion of IE students live thousands of kilometers from their homes; these 90 minutes are moments where we feel a special pride for being from your home country. While academics should not revolve around sports, these factors should be taken into consideration, especially in IE’s context.
While the university has provided some resources, I believe that grandiose and memorable events and policies should be taken into consideration. Campus life should capitalize on this non-annual event to really market the university and create unforgettable experiences for the students. For instance, choosing some specific games and showcasing the traditions, gastronomy, and culture of both nations. Choosing clubs from these countries could help the organization and successful execution of such an event. Once again, almost no other university has this much diversity; this is the perfect moment to celebrate it.
The IE ethos is grounded in heterogeneity and an atmosphere consisting of dissimilar experiences and points of view. The 2022 World Cup is an event that brings the world together more than any other. The diversity that we possess combined with this event proposes a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Typically, the World Cup occurs during the summer break; we are no longer geographically united as each student spends their vacations in different locations. The change of timeline provides an experience that may never present itself. Will IE take advantage of this opportunity and create something timeless, or will they let this chance slip through their fingers?
Featured image: composed of images from IE & FIFA