Sunday, June 4 th. A bit scared of the weather but full of hope we took a risk and as we planned we started our kayak journey from Puszczykowo to Poznań. It might have been our positive attitude working it's magic because it didn't rain almost that whole time. We had a chance to enjoy the view, test our skills, abilities and integrate for - almost - the last time this semester. Everyone considered it a nice adventure. Our plan to barbecue in Poznan didn't really come true because the weather had other plans - rainy summer shower. We decided not to give up though and we postponed our BBQ which took place on Thursday. We all brought our friends so there were lots of us to barbecue and play flanki.
Monday, June 5th. It was yet another time when we organized language workshops – this edition was addressed to children under care of the Stowarzyszenie Akademia Przyszłości. Our young guests had a chance to listen to presentations about the home countries of the Erasmus students coming from Tajikistan, Turkey, Spain and Belgium. They had an opportunity to take part in quizzes, which checked what they had learnt during the presentations; it is worth adding that they did very well! The most favorite part of our workshops turned out to be integration games, in which everyone could use up an excess of their energy and win interesting prizes. In the end, all our guests were given special badges, which will remind them about the day spent in a very unique way together with the Erasmus students and the volunteers from the SocialErasmus group.
All good things must come to an end. ESN members have made sure the end of Poznan Erasmus+ adventure, which for several hundred foreign students started in October or February, is at least as memorable as its beginning. During a traditional Farewell Party in the Colloquium club we also handed out the ERASMUSawards, that is statuettes for those who have been standing out from the crowd for the last few months, in seven categories: Greatest Traveller, Best Erasmus Couple, Erasmus Star, SocialErasmus, Mister Erasmus, Miss Erasmus and Party Animal. Check out the party’s photo gallery below!
Thursday, June 8th. Do you like going back in your childhood memories and recall old tales, read to you by your parents? The Erasmus students have had a chance to rediscover their favourite old stories. Last Thursday we visited children from fourth grade in Primary School No. 75 in Poznań. With students from Colombia, France and China we read well-known and beloved tales. The pupils listened to “Red Riding Hood” and “Three Little Pigs” but this time in English! It was a challenge but they made it and proved it by answering the questions of our quiz. Both the Erasmus students and the children had lots of fun and enjoyed the meeting.
She comes from Lubin, studies Elementary Education and English Language, loves working with people and "travelling on undiscovered trails". Thanks to recent match between Erasmus and highschool students she became iterested in football. In her free time she loves to enjoy bitterblack coffee and read good book. Who? Natalia Zielińska - the Coordinator of Cool'ture Project and since July... new President of ESN UAM Poznań. In our last edition of ESN Weekly News we are publishing a conversation with Natalia. What are her plans, does she feel any pressure and why did she got hooked on ESN so much? See for yourself!
ESN Weekly News: Eight months have passed since you joined our Section. What inspired you apply for the President of ESN UAM Poznań and to undertake such a challenge?
NATALIA: I am motivated by people; both those, with whom I have had an opportunity to work, as well as the people for whom we do all of this. Being involved in a few projects, conventions and our #HRday allowed me to obtain certain experience and skills, which made feel prepared for this function. Moreover, a couple of people expressed their opinions that I would be able to face such a challenge; and well, here I am!
EWN: During your presentation on the General Meeting of the Members, you mentioned that "the Board should be for people, rather than people for the Board". What do you mean by that?
NATALIA: In my opinion, the Board is not the most important part of the Section - Coordinators, Remaining Members and Newbies are. Those are the people who create projects, events and unforgettable experience for Erasmus students and it's worth noting that many of our projects have been noticed and appreciated both by ESN Poland, as well as ESN International. "Board for people" means being with people, supporting them in everything they do, being involved in their projects and making sure that the atmosphere is friendly. Just like I said on the General Meeting of the Members, being the President of the ESN UAM Poznań does not make me better than the rest of people, and I will not change in any way. I will still be myself, the same Natalia with whom you have been working for the past eight months.
EWN: All members of the new Board, with whom you are going to cooperate since July, were still the newbies in October. So experience of all of you in the section is equally short. What do you think, will it make your cooperation easier or more difficult?
NATALIA: I think that it has both positive and negative sides. With regard to advantages, we can certainly state that all of us were Coordinators and we had to handle similar problems, from which we will be able to protect our successors. We know projects inside out as well as we know people who are involved in them and that can be our main merit. I hope that our relatively short experience will result in new ideas for work and development of the Section. As a disadvantage we can acknowledge lack of somebody who is more experienced and who could support us with their knowledge when a need arises. Fortunately, we can count on the Board of Audit and the previous Board, which is supporting us and offering advice right now.
EWN: Over the last two years your predecessor made ESN UAM Poznań one of the most successfully functioning ESN sections in Poland at present. Being President of the section is a reason to be proud of but at the same time it is a big responsibility. How do you imagine our Section the day you will be handing over your power to the next President?
NATALIA: Kaja did a great job over the last two years and I will do my best to maintain high quality of Section’s work and its good opinion. I also hope that I will hand over a group of people who are not only working hard but who are also well integrated both with other Section members and with Erasmus students. People who will celebrate together both the successes of our Section and their own private ones, and who in bad moments will motivate and support one another as befits ESN UAM Family.
EWN: What concerns and hopes do you see in your cadence?
NATALIA: I hope that I won't let down people who believed in me and gave me a chance. I would like to fulfill all of my plans with the help of people who form unity and support each other. When it comes to concerns I don't have any right now and I try not to think about them although I am ready to face them.
Interview by Mateusz Marciniak (ESN Weekly News)
Until Friday, 30.06,18:00 – Stuff collection with ESN UAM Poznań
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ESN UAM Poznań Office Hours: every Friday, 16:00-17:00
Photography: Agata Przybyłowska