Music and street food at TUDARCo
The interaction between TUDARCo and the community around is steadily growing. The early week of July witnessed once again two exiting events, which brought to the university community members, who by their own words said they never expected to get into the university campus. These were local up-coming musicians famously known as underground musician, and street food vendors who are selling food along the road to the University.
The two events were organized by students from the School of Law and the School of Education respectively. These events were the climax of student’s projects done in the now ended semester, as part of the pilot phase of the SUSIE project.
The Law students had a project on intellectual property rights in which they engaged young up-coming musicians. They researched about intellectual property rights awareness of the up-coming musicians, and found out that these musicians are largely unaware of their rights. In one of the interviews, the musicians declared that they work very hard to produce their musical work, but they get very little or completely nothing in return. When asked why, they simply said that they are not informed on what they should do to get their rights, when their music is played on radio or on television stations or uploaded to various online music platforms. Based on these findings, students and musicians themselves co-created an awareness workshop for the up-coming musicians, to learn what to do to get everything right when they produce their music.
Similarly, students from the School of Education did their project through the contemporary geography of Africa course. They interviewed food vendors around TUDARCo, asking about challenges faced by the vendors, and particularly those associated with the on-going Covid pandemic. It was exciting to see the students interacting with the food vendors in the vendors business surroundings while interviewing them. Three major issues were mentioned several times. These were 1) hand washing, 2) food preservation and 3) waste management. Like the law students, the education students also co-created a solution where they decided to design a training workshop about the challenges identified.
The two training took place within TUDARCo Campus in the first week of July, 2021 where a number of food vendors and up-coming musicians came to the university. It was an exciting moment as almost all of them were entering the university gates for the first time. Some of them, especially food vendors were afraid to come, but students encouraged them and eventually they managed to attend.
Both trainings were very active! For example, in the property right workshop, presentations went on hand in hand with musical entertainment by musicians who attended the training. At the end, musicians who attended suggested that next training should be done alongside a musical concert, where they could showcase their talent, as this could be a platform for their promotion. The discussions were extremely exciting and eye opening for the musicians takin part.
The hand washing, food preservation and waste management workshop was a really hands-on training event, partly done by students themselves as well as invited speakers. A specialist in hotel management demonstrated to food vendors how food handling processes including preservation should be done, using locally and inexpensive available materials. Keeping food warm before being served to people, appeared to be one of the major concerns and especially with Covid-19 this was seen as serious challenge. The training therefore addressed this matter by hands-on activities, that were very much appreciated by food vendors. The hand washing and waste management trainings were not only appreciated by food vendors, but of most people attending the training. For example, some persons declared that they had not known how to wash their hands properly, and others said their eyes had been opened to see that waste can be turned into business opportunities!
Lecturers, students and micro entrepreneurs participating in the trainings.
The two trainings really gave the participants a lot in terms of knowledge, skills, interaction and networking. The events also gave both musicians and food vendors new ideas about business opportunities. To students and to the university as a whole, the process was a training experience that is impossible to acquired in a classroom. Bravo! To food vendors and musicians who attended the training and to the students who organized the training this was a great and memorable experience.
Author: Sinyati Tira, TUDARCo