The `fest' way to discover talent

What every college student must experience

AN INTEGRATION of like-minded people, a maelstorm of divergent talents and loads of fun. That's what a cultural fest symbolises to me — Ayesha, president of the Mount Carmel College students union. Cultural fests are not new to Bangaloreans. It's an opportunity to meet new people from various colleges all over the city and to showcase talent at an all new level. The events are categorised into literary events (debate, poetry, extempore, JAM, WTGW, creative writing, elocution); stage (dance, music, fashion show) and art (sketching, painting, cartooning). Fests are either conducted by individual college unions (large-scale) or by different departments (small-scale) which include language, media, travel and tourism, commerce, science, humanities, MCA, MBA and even food fests. According to Shawn Crasta, ex-Commerce Secretary, St. Aloysius College, "Fests are the only way of discovering professionalism within ourselves. Events like best CEO, venture capital, mock stock and product launch give us a chance to put our academic knowledge into practice. Simply put, it is our first step into the professional arena and regularly attending such fests gives us an edge over the rest once we leave college."

Fiercely competitive

Over the years, fests have gone from being only fun to being fiercely competitive both at the organisational and participatory levels. Budding entrepreneurs and managers are at the helm of the planning and organisational committees. Next in the hierarchy come volunteers and teachers overseeing the proceedings. Sponsorship comes from external sources as well as from the college and is the most important part of organising a fest. Pre-invites and invites need to be developed and sent.Martina, a first year student, says "It's a must for every college student to attend at least one fest during the course of the academic year. If not to compete, then at least for the scrumptious food!" The big names in the college fest business are Indian Institute of Management (Bangalore); National Law School; Mount Carmel College; Christ College; St. Joseph's P.U College; St. Joseph's College of Commerce; St. Joseph's College of Arts and Science; Indian Institute of Science; Jyoti Nivas College; and Sri Bhagwan Mahaveer Jain College.DIVYA GOJER

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