First Fall Festival to Take Place in October; Focus Will Be On DiversityBy Sheetal Jain and Betsy Krichten
The first ever Fall Festival, to be held the week of October 19, will feature a number of events aimed at highlighting diversity.
Events are scheduled to include swing dance lessons, an international film series, a mini-international fair, a day of public service, and a cultural symposium. The annual Theta Playstation charity fundraiser will also occur during the festival. The variety of events is designed to cater to the different interests of the MIT community.
"We hope to establish the Fall Festival as an annual event where MIT students, faculty, and staff can get together and remember that they are part of a larger community," said Stuart L. Jackson '00.
Over the summer, Kartik M. Mani '00 and Jackson, along with several student groups, set forth proposals to the large event funding panel of how to use funds set aside by then-Provost Joel Moses PhD '67.
The large event funding panel, comprised of members of the Undergraduate Association, the Graduate Student Council, and the Association of Student Activities, selected the Fall Festival concept and chose Mani and Jackson to head up the operation.
"We're trying to get a lot of MIT students involved," Mani said. "We really hope that the Fall Festival will turn out to be an event which will bring the MIT community together and instill a sense of pride in the school."
Events move to festival dates
The International Student Association moved its annual mini-international fair to coincide with the week of the festival. This prelude to the spring international fair includes presentations, such as songs and dances, by different ethnic groups. Paul K. Njoroge '00 said the fair allows "different cultures [to] show how they interact with one another."
Another regularly held annual event scheduled for festival week is Theta Playstation. Organized by Kappa Alpha Theta, attendees pay an entrance fee to play video games on Nintendo Playstations. The money raised goes to charity.
A special program by the Lecture Series Committee classics subcommittee called World Cinema will be showing international films from Monday to Thursday of the festival week. The committee will show "films from around the world that are representative of the cultures of each" nation, said Rex K. Min G, chairman of LSC.
The Ballroom Dance Team is offering free swing dance lessons during the week. This program will culminate in a presentation by the Dance Troupe and a dance on the weekend. "I was hoping that a swing dance, given its wide appeal with the general public, would draw not only students (undergrad and grad), but faculty and staff as well, so that the entire MIT community could enjoy the event," said Mark A. Herschberg, a member of the team.
The cultural symposium is being organized by the Campus Activities Complex Programming Board and the UA Committee on Multicultur-alism. The board has arranged for a mix of debates, speakers, and other activities each geared towards a different area of the world.
In addition, students will participate in the City Year community service program which will involve over 10,000 volunteers from the Boston/Cambridge area. Groups of about ten people will be assigned various projects around the city. A team captain and a project coordinator will be chosen from the group for special training to help organize the activities.