European Planning Meeting will see the debut of the Chair Team of AEGEE-Europe 2015-2016. For two years in a row, Tom Simons (AEGEE-Enschede) will be the Chairperson of the Agora/EPM with Marta Wnuk (AEGEE-Warszawa) acting as Vice-Chairperson. The line continues with the Secretary of the Agora – Lia Tuska (AEGEE-Kastoria/Sofia), and the IT assistant- Erik Steenman (AEGEE-Enschede).
The most experienced team member is Chairperson Tom Simons, who successfully run for a second time during Autumn Agora Kyiv. Being member of AEGEE-Enschede since 2010 and having attended many statutory events, he has certainly a big expertise when it comes to statutory events. Those can, however, be implemented and Tom has a clear vision on what can be changed. “In my opinion, there is currently an imbalance between discussing CIA (Corpus Iuricum Aegeeanse) text and time spent on elections. I hope that in the upcoming Agora we will have a plan in place to properly balance these two aspects.” says Tom. He will certainly have a useful hand with the Agora Reform Task who is currently studying our principal statutory event. “As Chair Team we still have a lot of standard work we need to take care of. So, having a motivated team to think about improvements is very much welcome.” he states, “But definitely it would also be a challenge when it comes to implement all the eventual changes during the next Agora. In fact they are currently working on a lot of good ideas to make the Agora more efficient, improve the quality of existing content and add new content.”
Marta Wnuk, the Vice-Chairperson, is thrilled to be a part of the team and she is looking forward to working for Spring Agora Bergamo and Autumn Agora Chișinău and seeing eventually their results. Also for her, reforming our statutory event is very high on her agenda, therefore Chair Team’s one, and she identified two major problems she would like to work on. “I see the importance in tackling lack of time for asking questions and sufficient debate and at the same time, losing precious minutes on parts of the agenda that are not of utmost relevance. Secondly, I would look at ways to make prytania more efficient” she continues. Coming from a year working in the Network Commission, when she worked closely with the local, she thinks she will be ‘able to bring more of local perspective into work of the Chair Team’. “What I mean by that”, she continues “is that I will try to include in our actions what I learnt during my term as a NetCommie – how Statutory Events are perceived and what challenges are connected with them. I believe it’s beneficial that Chair Team has a broad overview of the organisation.”
After losing the elections in Agora Cagliari against the current Secretary General Svenja van der Tol, Lia Tuska was elected in Kyiv. She was already secretary assistant several times and she said that secretaries need to have a good time management, be organised and have good listening skills and “you need to love what you are doing” she adds. The Secretary of the Agora is a task that not everybody wants to take, but minutes of the Agora are very important for us, as Lia confirmed: “I’ve been member of three different locals and only one of them actually shares the minutes of the local Agorae. I don’t live close to any of those cities anymore, so I cannot attend the local Agorae feeling that I don’t know anything about what is happening there if I don’t ask some of the members. […] That’s why I believe that minutes are important for people who cannot be there at the Agorae, for future generations, but also for the ones who are there to read what happened from an objective point of view”. According to CIA, minutes must be delivered within two months after the Agora/Epm and Lia is confident she will be able to meet the deadline. “I am glad that one of the most useful things that Leadership Summer School taught me is time management. I have already organised my time for after EPM and Agora Bergamo in order my minutes to be on time” she concludes.
Last but not least, Erik Steenman is the new IT assistant who decided to apply for the position because “ it will likely be my last chance to get a real taste of AEGEE-Europe. […] When I heard the applications for the IT-Responsible would open, I realised that if I would look back on my student life at that moment, I would likely regret not using my membership with AEGEE to go out into Europe more”. The IT position is prominent in an event that rely a lot on presentations and internet connection, that’s why Erik’s main task will be “making sure the Chair Team has a working internet connection, and that the correct presentation will be on-screen at the correct time. This shouldn’t be too hard if everyone would hand in their presentations in time. But of course that never happens”. Of course he will be actively involved in all Chair Team tasks. Erik will also deal with the Euth project that will be introduced during the upcoming Spring Agora Bergamo. Despite not being actively involved in the current work, he says that he will be in “setting up the infrastructure so we can test the new tools for the EUth project during the upcoming Agorae”.
Written by Erika Bettin, AEGEE-Verona