This month's Section in the Spotlight is a true representation of the spirit of the Erasmus Student Network. It was founded all the way back in 1991, but it has not lost any of its enthusiasm, motivation and drive. After all these years, they are still keeping their spot under the lights. The Section in the Spotlight for November 2017 is – ESN Porto!
ESN Porto was established in 1991 at the University of Porto and is the oldest ESN section in Portugal. At this very moment, the section has around 45 members, which include: a Local Board of five people (President, Vice-President, Treasurer, LR, and Event Manager); the coordinators of seven departments (HR, Communication, IT, Projects, Partnership, Activities, and Parties); and two supporting positions (Education Officer and Secretary).
Each semester, ESN Porto welcomes new members into their group. In order to make sure the quality of the section is maintained, they have a special system of selecting newbies:
“We do the first screening and invite them to a session where we explain ESN on the international, national and local levels. To be accepted, they need to have more than one academic year left of their university course and be free every Monday night. After choosing the candidates, they join ESN and are called ‘Parachutes’ – because they fall from the sky. They have the welcome month to show us how they work - which is then evaluated by HR with the help of all the members. If they pass, they are called ‘New Members’ and have a maximum period of one year to be nominated by an existing member to receive full membership” -
ESN Porto is famous for their events. They have their own ESN Porto Academy, which organises training sessions, workshops and team building exercises. In international ESN circles, they've hosted numerous major events: the Annual General Meeting (AGM) in 1995; the South-Eastern European Platform (SEEP) in 2006; the Council of National Representatives (CNR) in 2009 and 2014; and the International Erasmus Games (IEG) in 2017. They will also host the South-Western European Platform (SWEP) in 2018.
“We organise all kinds of activities, from cultural to educational. We host a trip every weekend (!), mainly within Portugal and sometimes to Spain. During the Welcome Month, we have events every day, such as a boat trip on the Douro River with Porto wine cellars visit, Surf Day, Portuguese night (our most famous event), City Rally, Night Walk and many others. During the rest of the semester, we organise at least one cultural activity per week, for example, a World Dinner. Every Wednesday and Saturday, we have themed parties and on weekends, as said before, we run trips. Last year, we organised 80 activities, 25 trips and 38 parties” -
ESN Porto’s flagship project is their own brainchild – the Portuguese Night. This is an event they do every semester, during the Welcome Month in a big house in front of the river, decorated with all the symbols and figures of Portugal. Their Erasmus students have the opportunity to try all the traditional Portuguese dishes and assist in the performance of academic tunas – the people that dress as Harry Potter in Portugal – fado groups and Rancho Folclórico – all traditional music.
ESN Porto collaborates with universities and companies involved in education and employability events. In collaboration with the University of Porto. “We believe that we can only improve if we have all of our members on the same level of knowledge or at least work on acquiring that knowledge. ESN Porto has always had a problem trying to plan workshops and training sessions for our members because we are extremely busy with events for our Erasmus students, so now we do it in the first hour of our weekly meeting” -
The section also implements the ESN projects ExchangeAbility, Social Erasmus and Mov’in Europe. The members regularly travel to other ESN countries’ events and are involved in the activities of the Committees, the Audit Teams and the Secretariat.
What makes ESN Porto unique? In their own words:
“We work with 15 universities and 30 local partners for 3,500 Erasmus students; we organise two Welcome Months, 80 activities, 25 trips, 38 parties, and 20 international projects activities; we sell 3,000 ESNcards; we have 2 recruitment drives, 12 team building activities, 2 weekend retreats, and 15 training sessions per year. This is what makes us unique – we work hard” -
For their 20th birthday, in 2011, ESN Porto created their own brand: t-shirts which said either “Please, send me back to Porto” or “Erasmus Addicted”. Their impressive history really proves that their members are still Erasmus Addicted and that this addiction is not fading away. Parabéns!Photo credits: ESN Porto
Section in the Spotlight del mese di Ottobre 2017 è ESN Macerasmus. La Sezione maceratese sta organizzando un ciclo di incontri, nell’ambito del progetto Erasmus In Schools - Discovery Europe, per gli studenti della scuola primaria e secondaria con tema l’Europa, l’Erasmus e tutte le varie possibilità di scambi e progetti internazionali. Il ciclo di incontri prevede un appuntamento mensile, da ottobre a maggio, durante il quale gli studenti possono interagire con i volontari ed alcuni studenti erasmus nell’ambito di attività organizzate su misura per loro dalla Sezione con l’obiettivo di portarli in viaggio per l’Europa.
Lezioni in inglese, viaggi per l’Europa, racconti di studenti erasmus, queste sono solo alcune delle attività che i volontari di Erasmus Student Network Macerasmus propongono agli studenti delle scuole primarie e secondarie dell’Istituto San Giuseppe e della scuola Vittra di Macerata nell’ambito del progetto Discovery Europe. Discovery Europe fa parte di Erasmus in School progetto che ESN Italia porta avanti da anni con l’obiettivo di promuovere la mobilità studentesca e le opportunità di studio all’estero. L’associazione ha organizzato un ciclo d’incontri della durata di 8 mesi, 16 ore suddivise in appuntamenti con cadenza mensile dove i più piccoli potranno anche coltivare una corrispondenza epistolare con altri studenti di una scuola svedese.
More information: Facebook ESN MacerasmusInstagram ESN MacerasmusTwitter ESN MacerasmusSito ESN MacerasmusSpotlight Title: Section In The Spotlight - ESN Macerasmus
"Here they fought! 1914 – 1918 On the First World War Trail", the photographic exhibition carried out by Alessio Franconi and sponsored by ESN Italia, is reaching many new places being now an international success. The new edition, enriched by numerous shots representing the First World War battlefields in seven different nations, will be inaugurated on 14th November 2017 at 18:00 at the prestigious Commenda di Pré, a millenary building, part of the Museum of the Sea of Genoa and located in the old port.
The author elaborating on the spirit of the project commented: "In the recent years I went to the battlefields where young people fought a hundred years ago and among the rocks I found their bones still scattered. A rather gruesome and at the same time impressive scene. On certain occasions I was accompanied by Erasmus friends and in silence we pondered on the thought that our grandfathers were often fighting each other in the opposing trenches. Thinking of how different the experience of those young people was compared with the life of their present-day peers, I cannot avoid to underline the role of European Union to ovoid such kind of tragedies between EU countries. The descendants of those valiant fighters today can enjoy peace, study and work abroad, making Europe a more united continent."
ESN Italia shares the spirit and invites you to a visit of this touching exhibition.
The initiative gained permission to use the official logo of the First World War Centenary by the Bureu for the anniversaries of national interest of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers. It is also under the patronage of the European Commission and many other entities such as the Italian Alpine Club, the National Alpine Association, Erasmus Student Network Italy, the Tourism Agency Slovenia, the Committee Alpini Group Milano Centro Giulio Bedeschi, the Poti Miru v Posočju Foundation, The International Propeller Club - Port of Milan and the Historical White War Society.
In collaboration with:
Sea Museum | MU.MA, Museum of the Commenda, Association of Promoters of Sea and Navigation Museums, Solidarity and Labor Cooperative.
We thank the sponsor:
The Standard Syndicate.
And also the technical sponsors:
OmLog SA the Art of Logistics, Permajet professional inkjet media, Labitalia S.r.l., Euroleges Studio Legale.
The author's photographic work was collected in a publication of the important Hoepli publishing house. The book is not a simple catalogue, but it contains a historical introduction featuring vintage photographs, a time line of the Great War, a photographic portfolio, and finally an atlas with maps to help readers trace the sites of the Great War. The book will be presented at the Commenda on 25th (Saturday) November. The cover and outline of the book is available on the dedicated Hoepli web page.
@Franconiphotos on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter & Telegram.Spotlight Title: "Si combatteva qui! 1914 – 1918" approda a Genova!
Proseguono le tappe della mostra fotografica realizzata da Alessio Franconi e patrocinata da ESN Italia “Si combatteva qui! 1914 – 1918 sulle orme della Grande Guerra”. Diventata ormai un successo internazionale, arricchita di numerosi scatti che ritraggono campi di battaglia della Prima Guerra Mondiale in ben sette diverse nazioni, verrà inaugurata il prossimo 14 novembre 2017 alle ore 18.00 presso il prestigioso Museoteatro della Commenda di Genova in Porto Antico.
L’Autore ci spiega lo spirito del progetto: “In questi anni mi sono recato sui campi dove combattevano i giovani di cento anni fa e tra le rocce ho trovato ancora sparse le loro ossa. Uno spettacolo tanto raccapricciante quanto impressionante. Talvolta sono stato accompagnato da amici Erasmus e in silenzio siamo rimasti a meditare sul fatto che i nostri bisnonni erano spesso in trincee contrapposte. Pensando a quanto sia diversa l’esperienza di quei giovani di allora rispetto ai loro pronipoti di oggi, non posso esimermi da lanciare un messaggio pro Unione Europea per ricordare come tragedie così siano oggi solo un appannaggio del passaggio e come i discendenti di quei valorosi combattenti oggi possano godere della pace, possano studiare e lavorare all’estero rendendo l’Europa un continente più coeso.”
ESN Italia condivide lo spirito e vi invita a visitare questa toccante esposizione.
L’iniziativa ha ottenuto l’autorizzazione all’utilizzo del logo ufficiale del Centenario della Prima Guerra Mondiale da parte della Struttura di Missione per gli anniversari di interesse nazionale della Presidenza del Consiglio dei Ministri ed il Patrocinio della Commissione Europea. Patrocinano altresì il Club Alpino Italiano, l’Associazione Nazionale Alpini, Erasmus Student Network Italia, Ente Turismo Slovenia, il Comitato per il Centenario in seno al Gruppo Alpini Milano Centro Giulio Bedeschi, la Fondazione Poti Miru v Posočju, The International Propeller Club – Port of Milan, la Società Storica Guerra Bianca.
In collaborazione con:
Museo del Mare | MU.MA, Museoteatro della Commenda, Associazione Promotori Musei del Mare e della Navigazione, Cooperativa Solidarietà e Lavoro.
Si ringrazia lo sponsor:
The Standard Syndicate.
Ed altresì gli sponsor tecnici:
OmLog SA the Art of Logistics, Permajet professional inkjet media, Labitalia S.r.l., Euroleges Studio Legale.
Il lavoro fotografico svolto dall’autore è stato raccolto all’interno di una pubblicazione della storica casa editrice Hoepli. Il libro non è un semplice catalogo ma racchiude una introduzione storica corredata da fotografie d’epoca, una time line della Grande Guerra, il portfolio fotografico ed infine un atlante corredato di mappe per aiutare il lettore a rintracciare i luoghi della Grande Guerra. Il libro verrà presentato alla Commenda il sabato 25 novembre. La scheda libro è disponibile sulla pagina web dedicata della Hoepli.
@Franconiphotos su Facebook, Instagram, Twitter & Telegram.Spotlight Title: "Si combatteva qui! 1914 – 1918" approda a Genova!
This small section located in western Slovakia was founded in March 2016 and is currently working under two universities - University of St. Cyril and Methodius and Trnava's University. ESN Trnava is mainly managed by the President, Vice-President, Local Representative and Partnership Manager. Among local coordinators are Mov’in Europe coordinator, SocialErasmus coordinator, ExchangeAbility coordinator, HR and Buddy coordinator. Buddy coordinator is responsible for connections between local and exchange students. The structure of the section is very inclusive and all active members are welcomed to participate in the meetings between Board members and local coordinators.
Since the section is young, there are no foreigners as members of the team. At the moment the section is focused on the recruitment of new members which is conducted by the HR team who makes campaigns at universities and manages social media campaigns. All potential members always go through the personal interviews with the board members.
ESN Trnava is active in organising many events both for ESN members and exchange students. Events for ESN members include teambuilding activities when members share the experiences that they have outside of ESN life. They also include special meetings with insights of the section's work. In April 2017 ESN Trnava held first ever "Meet Your Colleagues" meeting where Slovakian ESN members could share their experiences. To empower relationships with thirty exchange students the section organised a special event called “Weekend in the Forest”.
ESN Trnava places a big emphasis on showing the Slovak culture to exchange students by organising trips around Slovakia and Slovak Nights with traditional food and dances. During national dinners, exchange students can present their countries through food, culture, quizzes, traditional clothes and dances.
ESN Trnava is also actively involved in international ESN projects. For example, SocialErasmus which includes volunteering help to the local community. Exchange students and ESN members help to locals with dog walking, clothes donation and many other activities. They also organise Erasmus in Schools, where exchange students talk about their home countries and mobility experiences with local pupils at secondary schools. On top of that, exchange students can join “Books, Children & Erasmus” campaign when students visit elementary schools and read books together. Furthermore, ESN Trnava is involved in work with ExchangeAbility and Mov’in Europe projects.
Members of ESN Trnava do not stand back when it comes to the participation in national and international events. Not only can you meet them at National and mini-National Platforms of ESN Slovakia, they also participate in Czechoslovak Platforms, National Platforms held with their neighbours, ESN Czech Republic and Meet Your Colleagues meetings. When it comes to international events, they are presented at AGM and CEP. All of this helps them stay motivated and gives them new ideas.
“We want to ensure the best time for our exchange students and leave a mark on their memories with our work. Smiles and happiness of our Erasmus students are the most valuable reward which we can get.”
- Stanislava Vojteková, Local Representative of ESN Trnava
Although ESN Trnava is a relatively small and young section, it is capable of big things and we can expect that they will continue their growth and success. As they stated, they are not afraid of leaving their comfort zone to make revolutionary things!
La sezione locale di ESN a Bari nasce come associazione “Erasmus Bari” nel 2000 come associazione di volontariato, No Profit, apartitica e aconfessionale, che si occupa di assistere gli studenti stranieri che svolgono un periodo di scambio presso l’Università degli Studi di Bari e da allora, giorno dopo giorno, continua a sperimentare una crescita costante grazie a tutti gli studenti internazionali venuti con i diversi programmi di mobilità ed entra a far parte del network di ESN nel 2009.
L’Associazione si occupa, da una parte, di facilitare l’arrivo, la permanenza e la partenza degli studenti stranieri attraverso attività di carattere storico/culturale, ludico/ricreativo, sportivo e linguistico volte a promuovere il territorio e il paesaggio, la città e la cultura pugliese; dall’altra ESN Bari cerca di aprire alla popolazione (non solo universitaria) le porte all’Europa e al mondo, attraverso attività d’integrazione che mettono gli studenti italiani a diretto contatto con gli studenti stranieri, svolgendo anche attività con le scuole superiori e con altre associazioni sul territorio.
La sezione di Bari è composta da circa 25 soci attivi e ogni anno accoglie circa 300 studenti stranieri.
Il progetto “Buddy System” nasce per offrire agli studenti incoming delle università di Bari un servizio di tutorato immediato, personalizzato e completo.
Il progetto, assegnando ad ogni incoming che ne faccia richiesta un buddy qualificato (tra i volontari di ESN e gli ex eramus outgoing delle università locali, preparati attraverso un incontro formativo di ESN), si propone di:
accogliere gli studenti incoming al momento dell'arrivo a Bari;
aiutare gli studenti incoming nello svolgimento delle prime pratiche burocratiche;
assistere gli studenti incoming lungo tutto il loro percorso degli studi presso le facoltà ospitanti, rimuovendo gli ostacoli per una proficua frequenza dei corsi e favorendo un’efficace integrazione nel sistema universitario locale;
aiutare gli studenti incoming ad integrarsi nella comunità locale.
La realizzazione del progetto prevede l’assegnazione ad ogni Buddy di uno studente Erasmus, oppure l’assegnazione ad ogni Buddy di un gruppo di Erasmus con esperienze omogenee.
Il servizio di Buddy System è stato offerto agli erasmus del primo e del secondo semestre. La risposta da parte degli incoming e degli ex outgoing delle università di Bari è stata molto importante: 215 incoming e 60 ex outgoing e soci ESN Bari.
Lo scorso 15 settembre c’è stato il primo evento Buddy System in cui ogni Buddy ha avuto la possibilità di conoscere meglio e passare del tempo con il/i proprio/i erasmus student.
A chiusura di anno accademico, invieremo ai partecipanti un questionario di feedback qualitativo per capire i punti di forza del progetto ed i punti di debolezza dello stesso, in modo da poter offrire un servizio sempre migliore nel tempo.
More information: Facebook ESN BariSito ESN BariInstagram ESN bariTwitter ESN Bari
October marks the beginning of a new semester. It is a time when all sections of the Erasmus Student Network start their engines and get ready for another ten months of action and excitement. Some of them have already got the ball rolling and thus have earned the right to contend for the prestigious Section in the Spotlight award. But there can only be one winner, and this time it is – ESN PW Warsaw!
ESN PW started off back in 2005 as the initiative called Mentor for foreign students at the Warsaw University of Technology. Over the course of time, the members of Mentor noticed they needed more activities than their initial organisation could provide, so they founded an ESN section, which was officially registered in 2007. The section celebrated their tenth birthday this January.
ESN PW Warsaw consists of several levels of members: freshers, the newbies; regular members; honorary members, ‘ESN PW’s Hall of Fame and Glory’; supporters, who do not attend university; the Audit Commission; and the Board. The Board is composed of the President, the Vice President, the Treasurer and two HR Members. Their work is facilitated by the team coordinators within the section.
Like all the sections of ESN Poland, ESN PW Warsaw is well-known for putting together all sorts of fun projects aimed at both its members and exchange students. They have organised numerous workshops, training sessions, social activities such as ice-skating and bowling, city games, visits to museums and sites of cultural importance, and so on.
The section also created several very special and distinctive projects which include Creative, which “focuses on the cultural side of Warsaw’s life”; Travel, which is their flagship project; and Polish-themed parties. Perhaps the most interesting ones is ESNband, a musical group that gathers ESNers and exchange students who play musical instruments, sing or simply have a passion for music.
ESN PW supports the international projects SocialErasmus, ExchangeAbility, Erasmus in Schools, MapAbility, Mov’in Europe, and Responsible Party. Many of its members are involved in ESN affairs on the national and international levels. ESN PW organised several meetings of ESN Poland, and most importantly, co-organised pre-AGM CNR and AGM Warsaw.
When asked what made their section unique, they said:
“It may sound a bit cliche, but it’s the team. ESN PW consist of many different personalities, people with different talents who just get along. We are one big family, ready to act. Thanks to having such a great team, we are not afraid of organising big events like CNR, NP, CLR or Polish Wedding party for one hundred people. Other sections can definitely look up to us, when it comes to integrating members & training them.”
The team spirit among the section’s members and their dedication have made ESN PW Warsaw the deserving winner of this month’s Section in the Spotlight. If they have managed to do all this in just ten years, who knows what will happen in another ten? Their work should serve as an inspiration, encouragement and motivating force to us all.
Photo credits: ESN PW Warsaw