Pamplin’s Office for DEIB hosts its first-ever Global Etiquette Dinner
November 3, 2023
The Pamplin College of Business Office for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) held its first-ever Global Etiquette Dinner on October 18, 2023, at the Inn at Virginia Tech. In partnership with Pamplin’s International Programs, the event brought together students, faculty, staff, global mentors, and corporate partners from all backgrounds to learn more about business etiquette and how it varies throughout the world.
Tom Duetsch, professor of practice for the Howard Feiertag Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management, facilitated a presentation and demonstration of American dining etiquette including manners, appropriate behaviors, appearance, and more.
Students had the opportunity to network with professionals from EY, Target, and MarkWeber LLC, among others. Students learned more about study abroad opportunities available to them, such as DEIB Around the World, an international experiential learning program that offers students the opportunity to travel abroad without the stressor of finances, directly aligning with The Virginia Tech Advantage, a commitment to offer a broad educational experience to undergraduate students who have financial need.
“I am an international student and coming here from a different culture and not learning a lot about etiquette and the culture in the U.S., in general, has been quite an adjustment,” said Anirudh Vigneshwar Gokul Raj, a senior majoring in corporate finance and management consulting. “Food is a great way of learning culture and getting to understand the different aspects of a culture. It’s a great way to bring all students together and learn from each other, and faculty as well.”
To further enhance student learning across cultures, several ‘hosts’ from international backgrounds sat among the students at each table. Each host's international experiences varied across countries with representation from Italy, China, Taiwan, France, and more. Hosts shared their international dining experiences which inspired open dialogue with students about cultural differences.
“I work with a lot of people, not only internationally at EY, but I have a lot of clients that come from different backgrounds, different cultures, and diverse backgrounds,” said Negar Jamshidimehr ’11, ’13, a senior manager with EY and vice chair-elect for the Pamplin Advisory Council’s DEIB committee. “Giving students the opportunity to be involved in programs like these gives them a great opportunity to be ready for the real world. I am very amazed with the increasing efforts that are happening in Pamplin.”
DEIB’s Global Etiquette Dinner is one of many programs and initiatives offered to students throughout the academic year. All programs and initiatives adhere directly to Pamplin’s strategic initiative 5.6., to build a model inclusive community.
Visit pamplin.vt.edu/DEIB to learn more about DEIB’s programs, events, impact, news, giving, and more.
Written by A’me Dalton