May arrived, love is in the air and Section in the Spotlight has a new winner. The competition was fierce and the results tight but the SitS May 2013 goes to ESN Trieste. Being part of ESN Italy, ESN Trieste is located on the Adriatic coast, almost on the border of Italy & Slovenia.
ESN Trieste is a fairly young section whose history dates back to summer 2011. Back then a group of 6 Erasmus addicts refused to end their exchange experience upon return home and they agreed to create an association that would be helping exchange students in their city. By the end of September Associazione Studenti Erasmus Trieste emerged and within 2 consecutive Italian NPs in October ’11 and February ’12 the section first gains their candidate status and later becomes 45th section of ESN Italy. A big milestone for section was their first section partnership with ESN Primorska, with whom they cooperate on monthly basis regarding various events, trips & activities.
Currently consisting of 24 active members, ESN Trieste developed an interesting way how to grant section membership. Each potential member has to present their candidacy and for the next 2 months, potential members are evaluated based on their availability & enthusiasm. In the end a final vote is taken. Becoming an ESN Trieste member means you get the right to vote in the assembly (e.g. Board vote) and get fully involved in section work. The internal work structure is divided into 5 Committees (Trips, Graphics/Web, Events, Sports, Commercial) & Board that consist of 5 members (vice-/President, LR, Treasurer, Secretary) plus Webmaster as Board supporter. The section has their own ESN Office with regular office hours and apart from regular communication tools, ESN Trieste regularly publishes in a local newspaper “il Piccolo”.
Being an exchange student in Trieste, you can choose from quite a variety of different activities that ESN Trieste brings you. If you don’t just want to be another participant, but rather prefer to get actively involved in preparations & organization, there are regular International Dinners. When it comes to sport, exchange students can join official ESN Trieste team and play in provincial trophy “Città di Trieste". As for the SocialErasmus, there are events like blood donation day. ESN Trieste also organized a charity match whose cashing went to victims of earthquake in Emilia Romagna in May 2012. On national level, ESN Trieste participated in SE project “A Scholarship for Congo”. Section is also active in Erasmus in Schools. Whether in cooperation with Trieste municipality or AIESEC Trieste, section members together with Erasmus students go to schools to promote student mobility and they have 2 more EiS events planned for this semester.
ESN Trieste also takes part in ESN Italy project Erasmus Welcome Days: Welcome meeting, Campus tour, “Useful” city tour (places in Trieste that every exchange student should know), pizza dinner, Welcome party, Trieste sightseeing, football tournament and 2 trips (usually Miramare castle and Venice) all this in one week. The official Welcome Day ceremony takes place in Town Hall in presence of city mayor, University rectors and other authorities. Throughout the semester there are plenty other daily trips to nearby cities & villages and almost every month a 2-3 day trip to places like Ljubljana, Milan, Belgrade and of course both Italian National Events in Rome & Sicily.
Being a culturally rich city, ESN Trieste arranges various museum visits in cooperation with city municipality that guarantees free entrance for Erasmus students. Here a visit of the Risiera di San Sabba- the only Italian internment & extermination camp deserves special attention. Exchange students have a unique opportunity to experience local cuisine & traditions during carnival in Muggia every February. There are regular basketball & football events and for adrenaline junkies’ paintball or rafting in cooperation with ESN Primorska are THE options to choose. As for the nightlife, ESN Trieste always provides their exchange students with the best of the best parties in top clubs in the city.
The brand new Flagship project of ESN Trieste is the Olympic Games that take place during the 1st week of May with disciplines like: 5-a-side, basketball, volleyball, table tennis, table soccer, cycling, orienteering, archery and running. In the end of the week a traditional “Bavisela” city marathon will take place. Various disciplines are being prepared in cooperation with different subjects, like University Sportscenter, Trieste Archery Company or local bars with promotion covering local media & websites of ESN Trieste and University.
The involvement of local students is mostly done through cultural tandems where people exchange & teach each other languages. Locals also greatly participate in all sports activities, trips & parties. Section makes sure local authorities are always involved in bigger ESN events. ESN Trieste also regularly updates their partners list & acquires new ESN Card deals.
ESN Trieste is also active on other levels of ESN. On national level ESN Trieste members are regular participants of all Italian NPs, 3 local members are parts of up to 5 ESN Italy Committees and just before AGM Maribor ESN Trieste had hosted Italian NP with impressive amount of international guests. Section members also didn’t miss a single International ESN event since they joined the Network, be it AGM Granada, SWEP Madrid (where they began their 2nd section cooperation with ESN UC3M from Spain), SEEP Athens or most recently AGMaribor. Exceptional level of cooperation with ESN Primorska involves not only monthly joint events but also attendance of ESN Slovenia NPs on behalf of ESN Italy.
It is this immense cooperation with ESN Primorska that ESN Trieste is most proud of. Despite being the 2 geographically closest ESN sections (not considering sections in the same city) the fact that they are in different countries, with different languages, culture & considering past events makes the distance much bigger. Yet they as young people try to narrow this gap through close cooperation and that is what makes ESN Trieste so international. “International like the trips we organize, international like the cooperation we have with our twinned sections, international like the platforms we regularly attend, and like the great people we meet there. But, most of all, international like the students we work for and we live with, building up together a new Europe and a new world. PALLOMERI!”
Written by Prokop Teper