Developing Yourself during AEGEE-Dresden’s RTC last December

From the 11th until the 14th of December, AEGEE-Dresden organised their very first Regional Training Course (RTC), which was also their first international event since they were re-founded. Adina Letzguβ, one of the participants, wrote a report for The AEGEEan about her experiences during her four days in the German town.

What is the result of 16 participants, three trainers and 5 organisers spending four days of workshops and leisure program in the beautiful city of Dresden? An awesome and unforgettable experience full of AEGEE spirit, self-development… and of course lots of fun!

This four day training course started with a great three hour long city tour through Dresden held by a former president of AEGEE-Dresden, Stefan May. As he is a Dresden-born, student of history he not only showed us the most popular buildings in Dresden, but also told many interesting stories about them and the history of Dresden. Due to the chilly German weather, the cold crept into participants, but that wasn’t a problem for main organiser Jorge Sánchez Hernández (president of AEGEE-Dresden): “Guys, leave all your bags on the side and come close together… closer … and now: let’s play the rabbit game … (he started jumping forming his hands to small paws, shouting) rabbit attack, rabbit attack, rabbit attack,…” Simple but very, very effective and funny. From then on, the rabbit attack was a running gag of this training course (by the way, you can also vary the game playing penguin attack, hamster attack etc. – lots of fun and warmer feet guaranteed.).

Continuing the program with a stop at the important Striezel Christmas Market, participants had the opportunity to get “infected” by the pre-Christmas atmosphere in Germany and of course to try the typical German and Dresden Christmas specialties like Glühwein, Bratwurst and Dresdner Christstollen. After driving to the accommodation, the evening ended with a ‘soft party’ giving participants and organisers the chance to get to know each other better. The next two days contained many different workshops under the topic of self-development. The sessions covered a variety of relevant fields and topics about the subject and many, many opportunities to exercise them.

Starting with workshops about communication and intercultural communication the next sessions gave attention to feedback processes, time management and storytelling including many practical parts and opportunities to directly train the new gained knowledge. Thematically the first day of workshops ended with an improvisation course consisting of many practical and funny exercises. The main topic of the second workshop day was public speaking which included not only courses about how to build and deliver a speech, but also about the visualizing part of a speech, a simulation of a job interview and a session about non-verbal communication. As completion of these two very instructive days, the participants could implement their new knowledge in a final speech which each of them had to hold at the end of this day.

Besides this quite serious program – which anyway included a lot of laughing and fun, especially during the practical training parts – the organisers created a perfect leisure program. After the first evening out at the Christmas Market the second evening ended with a costume party. As a result of the choice of two mottos for the costume – animal or space – interesting creatures like space cats were dancing around at night. Finally there was European Night during the last evening, but I think there’s no further comment needed for that, except one special drink the organisers prepared directly in front of our eyes: Feuerzangenbowle, a traditional German drink during Christmas time.

In contrast to the big variety of outfits at the costume party, during this evening everyone was asked to wear a white T-shirt. Not for starting a wet T-shirt contest or something like that, but to be written on by the others with comments, statements, pictures etc. Thanks to that, everybody now has his personal and unique souvenir of this event. Besides the program, the surroundings did the rest to make this event super awesome: perfect accommodation and really, really delicious meals cooked by Ingo Kaiser (AEGEE-Dresden). And unforgettable: the all-morning wake up song Salsa Tequila by Anders Nilsen! This song gave energy for the whole day!

But in the end one thing has to be clearly highlighted: this was the very first international event of the new antenna AEGEE-Dresden and it was a complete success. It was an awesome event from the very beginning. Thanks for doing such a great job, AEGEE-Dresden! Some quotes:

“Our participants were just perfect. That’s what made our RTC so good.” (Jorge Sanchez Hernandez, Main Organiser, AEGEE-Dresden)

“It’s amazing when you realize that you need less than 48h to develop your communication and presentation skills” (Sonia Herrera, participant, AEGEE-Thessaloniki)

“Great blending of valuable workshops and epic party nights” (Daniel Fonseca Pilzecker, participant, AEGEE-Dresden)

“Salsa, Tequila, Corazón… and awesome food!” (Eileen Gioia, participant, AEGEE-Bamberg)

Written by Adina Letzguβ, AEGEE-Mannheim