Sometimes the best ideas are the simplest. This idea was incredibly simple, but utterly brilliant. The Student Association had a difficult mission: to get all the new students, including the BSBA and the graduates, to integrate and get to know each other before the start of term. It was a tough job, but Carpe Diem, the new Student Association, were more than up to the job.

The students were under orders to meet at 6pm in the cafeteria, where a cocktail was waiting for them. After they donned IUM t-shirts and chatted nervously they went outside to see what awaited them: two of Monaco’s miniature tourist trains to take them on their own private tour of The Principality! The students were about to enjoy one of the best nights of their life.

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The students felt like superstars as the trains snaked through the streets of Monaco. Tourists and locals on the streets took photos and videos of them as the mini trains trundled past. The train was cranked up to full speed as it pelted round the harbour to local restaurant Stars n Bars, before the students walked around the corner to Brasserie de Monaco for much merriment. Then all aboard the train again, a quick toot toot and off to the next destination.

A running commentary was provided by members of the Student Association on the tannoy system which entertained the students, pointed out local areas of interest, and told them to shut up in the more exclusive areas of the Principality, including Casino Square and by the Palace. There was a short stay at Kare(ment) for a cocktail and a brief dinner before onto the final destination: Gerhards Café in the Fontvieille Harbour. There weary students, hoarse from so much cheering and tired from waving at the locals, enjoyed a free beer, before making their way back to Kare(ment) for a night of partying.

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The next night was more subdued as the students, tired and emotional from the night before, made their way back to Kare(ment) for the official Welcome Dinner. As usual Kare(ment) had put on a fantastic spread of food, and the students got to know each other in a quieter environment as well as being able to chat to the many professors who attended.

For those who were still alive by Saturday there was another unofficial student trip: most of the students including the BSBA and the newbies on the Intensive English Program went to Jimmyz for a night of dancing before rolling home the next morning. It was a fantastic start to the term, and the first of many amazing events to be organized by the Student Association. We await the next event with baited breath.

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