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Students in Dr. Sabinah Wanjugu's International Marketing 471 class and Dr. Nancy Kovanic's Principles of Management 305 class participated in a Diversity Simulation during the fall semester.

The simulation, called BaFa' BaFa', is a cross-cultural simulation that offers hands-on experience in navigating diverse cultural settings. The two classes were split into two groups -- one group formed the "Alpha" culture while the other formed the "Beta" culture. The Beta culture used a language made up of a combination of consonants and vowels while also using gestures to communicate. The Alpha culture spoke English but also used a variety of gestures in their communication. Visitors from each culture had a chance to observe the other and report back to their own culture with their findings.

The goal of the simulation is to help students understand the value and importance of working with a diverse workforce. The game is also used to help show students how stereotypes of other cultures are formed and perpetuated. 

"By creating two distinct classroom cultures, the simulation compels students to reconsider their approach when interacting with individuals who have been shaped by different cultural norms. It is an engaging and eye-opening activity that helps students develop crucial skills for their future careers in the global marketplace," said Dr. Wanjugu.

Dr. Kovanic added: "The reaction from the students coordinating the activity was positive -- They were engaged and fully invested in the simulation." 

Photos from the Activity