By Augustine Holguine
(Singing) Oh what a beautiful morning. Oh what a beautiful day. The weather was beautiful which went well with a perfect day. Our group had the pleasure of being transported by bus to the International Press Center (IPC). The bus service gave each of us the opportunity to explore the city. The majority of the buildings that we have seen in Brussels are ancient, but I am amazed with how the latest technology is constructed into these monuments and buildings.
Our amazing journey for the day began with a visit to the IPC. The IPC is located in the Residence Palace. The Residence Palace was initially founded by Brussels elite and upper class residents in the 1920′s. The building housed a grand ballroom, apartments, restaurants, and many other luxuries amenities. During our visit we met two intelligent men Claude Cuvelier, who works in the communication department of IPC, and Walter Vanderstukken from Video House. Monsieur Vanderstukken’s company houses the newsroom equipments and studios for international journalists and news anchors.
The IPC has 4 purposes:
* They have multiple rooms where conferences are held by diplomats, local journalists, foreign journalists, and the CEOs of major multinational corporations.
* The IPC rents office space to the foreign press correspondents.
* This amazing organization helps the federal government manage their press communication. However, Monsieur Cuvelier did explain to us that the IPC does not depend on the government nor are they influenced by the government.
* They also provide press communication services.
Additionally, Monsieur Vanderstukken gave us a tour of the facility. They house a room for translators and in the armchairs the press or political visitors can choose which language they would like to hear. If Video House need to move the newsrooms and supporting equipment they can easily remove everything based on design. The multiple newsrooms were constructed to not cause any damage to the building, because its a national monument. The building also has 15 satellites, which can send and receive information to any news channel and broadcasting company in the world. Within each room Video House has found innovative ways to use technology to help streamline the multiple services the IPC provides.
These two gentleman provided our group with valuable information that made me understand how communication and technology is integrated in Belgium. I am highly impressed with how IPC and Video House has integrated their diverse skills to provide essentially a hub for the international press.
Later we visited the Parlamentarium, and despite a minor setback for a member of the group we were able to enjoy the self -guided museum. I would highly recommend this museum to anyone who visits Brussels. Considering my interest in politics I found this museum to be a great tool for my career. In the future when I am employed by an international government agency,I would be able to use the information I learned today to better understand the political and cultural relationship between the European countries. The Parlamentarium gives you the history of the European Union by decades. Each person is given a device that resembles the IPhone and everyone is able to choose which language they would like to hear in the headset. The museum has modern interactive displays of important protests, and nation changing events. When you place the handheld gadget over the letter I, information about what happened during each year within a set decade is provided with multiple pictures.
An interesting decade in the Parlamentarium is the year 2050 this section shows the visitors what the European Union’s goals are for creating a better and stronger economy, environment, and society for all the citizens. Additionally, the 2050 segment of the self-guided tour gave information about the European Unions and using the monumental moments to educate not only their future generation, but everyone else in the world. Preserving the past and moving forward. This visit reminded me of the words on the Haitian flag l’union fait la force (together we are stronger). The European Union has proven that this statement rings a lot of truth.