After the summer break, the Section in the Spotlight is back! And we are given a unique opportunity to have a sneak peek into the life of a section that will soon organize the February 2015 Meeting of the Council of National Representatives, Section in the Spotlight October 2014 ESN Debrecen!
ESN Debrecen was founded in 2009, although they already had a 5 years history of working for exchange students. Structure-wise the section is officially part of the Student Union, with a full name “Student Committee on International Affairs”. Currently having around 40 active members (including Board) and almost 100 buddies, there sure is a lot of HR to manage. To assure that everyone knows what to do, various FB Groups, mailing lists and regular weekly meetings are held. A section Newsletter offers most up-to date information to the subscribers, and ESN Debrecen is also present in every issue of the University magazine.
As it has become almost an unwritten rule, no Section in the Spotlight can be elected unless it is strong in organizing SocialErasmus and Erasmus in Schools activities. That is also the case here. ESN Debrecen offers wide variety of SE activities and regularly takes their exchange students to local schools. The next popular activity are International dinners, especially because they combine lots of food and various country presentations. And the tickets to all their trips are always sold out whether it is Tokaj wine region, Budapest or nature park! Other sections activities include hungarian movie nights, Kitchen school, bowling nights, Tuesday pubbings or Debrecen Treasure Hunt.
The flagship event of the section is however called the International Event. It takes place outdoors every spring. The main purpose is to remove the walls separating cultures and nations and encourage open-minded attitude. Various activities are available for both local and exchange students, such as Geo challenge, Giang board game, Stereotype wall, Science square etc. International food tasting and especially Mobility Fair complete the whole array of events available during the International Event. Partners of ESN Debrecen such as AEGEE or AIESEC also offer various workshops and presentations. Together with AIESEC and AEGEE, ESN Debrecen also makes a Foreign Exchange Event, which aims at informing local students about various scholarship opportunities and also promotes student mobility. In fact, promoting mobility as a lifestyle is among the ESN Debrecen’s official tasks as a part of Student Union, and they are doing very well thus far, also thanks to their active participation in PRIME and recently in STORY.
Three of the current ESN Debrecen members are also in the National Board on the positions of the President, Treasurer and WPA of ESN Hungary, and the April National platform was also held here! ESN Debrecen also has a member in ICE. The section never skipped an AGM or CEP and speaking of SocialErasmus, ESN Debrecen became “the best SE section” in Hungary. And next is the CNR!
What could be the secret behind the success of ESN Debrecen? “ … team spirit. We are able to work together, while we are having fun, and we are not even realising that actually we are working. We like being together, and organizing events not only to entertain international students, but also to entertain ourselves. This is the secret of our success and I am really happy for being the member of this amazing team. Furthermore, this harmony is visible, in my opinion that is why international and Hungarian students also enjoy our events. Our enthusiasm is what makes them enthusiastic as well. Our section holds trainings two or three times each semester, this frequency is also quite unique, I think. Above all, we have our own traditions, for instance, on May 1 our team always has a barbecue together.” Cheers from Pedro, ESN Debrecen section mascot.
Written by Prokop Teper