PANAGHIGALAAY 2021: UIC CODE Transcends to an International Virtual Event
When they thought it was impossible, they opened the door and embraced each other. Not even a global pandemic can stop a friendship from blooming. No distance, no disparateness, no language barrier, and not even an unstable internet connection can ruin a mission of defying barriers.
With the goal of expanding knowledge towards various cultures, promote cultural awareness and understanding, build links and create friendship, the Communicator’s Organization for Excellence and Development (CODE), the academic club of the Communication Arts students of the College of Arts and Humanities, broke through the hindrance that is distance and broke new ground as they kicked off their first international event. With the support of the University of the Immaculate Conception, they have hosted Panaghigalaay; A Cross-Cultural Communication Event with the theme: Defying boundaries through Communications to Promote Unity in Diversity. From the Cebuano term panaghigalaay, which means making friends, the concept to use cross-cultural communication to establish amity was then generated.
Inviting almost 80 delegates from UIC, other schools from Davao, and some International Partners, CODE organized a two-day event celebrating culture and friendship. On the 24th and 25Th day of April, the team welcomed students and professors from Widya Mandala Surabaya Catholic University, Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Ciputra University, Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia, University of Malaya, Singapore University of Social Sciences, Mara University of Technology, National Quemoy University, St. Mary University, Indonesia University of Education and The National University of Malaysia. Together, each student and even professors ignored dissimilarities and instead created a safe space for everyone.
At the sessions, students shared various types of delicacies, traditional clothing, norms, customs and traditions, games, language, art, music, traditional performances, and literature to educate, learn uniqueness, and remember the importance of cultural awareness. They also participated in the insight sharing as they recount all the things, they have learned from each other. In a short period of time, everybody found that interrelation and comfort in their conversations. It was in that virtual room that everybody saw not their differences but the splendid grandeur that is commonality.
It is a great thing to witness such an amazing affair of people who were once strangers now enjoy each other’s company just because of an event. Indeed, communication can transcend diversity and through acceptance, respect, and understanding we can breed unity. Kudos to everyone who made the event possible!