Creating future few years ago for me was something I have never imagined. Now I can bravely say "YES, I CAN". Why? Because I have found a place where all dreams can come true!

Once I had decided that I must apply for ERASMUS - I do not know why, but since school years it was something I had to experience. And finally, I got on the bus which led me to the Warsaw where from  I have almost successfully reached my final destination Ostrava Czech Republic by train. I got tricked by the taxi driver, I got lost in the city at the first day while looking for the super - market when some homeless tried to "take" me while waiting for the train. But still it was the BEST decision in my life to seize this opportunity. 

But the real benefits of this adventure started to show up after getting back to Lithuania. First days being at home, going to lectures were SOOO depressing that I had to do something. It seemed that life is going nowhere as everybody was so sad, wasn't smiling... And forget  (wasn’t thinking) about English for sure! 

This is why I have applied to become a mentor - it was interesting - many parties and friends. However, I have started to ask more. As the ESN office was near the house I was living at that moment, I was attending all meetings, I have also started to help other students to find what they did need and finally I had my first project! At that day I felt the opportunity to create something new, I felt the potential of ESN VGTU which were not exploited. Soon I was elected as the Head Coordinator of the Social Projects Committee. It was 100% new as nobody ever tried to do this - maybe this was the main reason which forced me to go further, the possibility to CREATE. My biggest dream to prove that ERASMUS is not only parties and trips became true - for the first time in Lithuania ESN went SOCIAL. 

Now my tenure is over, but new leaders of the committee continue the traditions to follow the earlier events. They continue develop traditions, which came from my heart and were realized with the help of sleepless nights. In my opinion, this is the biggest reward you can get.

Moreover, ESN changed my personal life and character as well. I have met many new people, who became my new friends. I have learned to communicate with different cultures, I have expanded my horizons and showed to others and to myself that everything is possible. Really! Funny story is that I have even got a full-time job as an Engineer with the help of ESN. 

Nowadays, I still cannot stop. One very clever ESN'er said: "ESN is like a drug – at the moment you try it for the first time you either give it up or you never stop using". And I have not stopped untill now and I won't (sorry for those who doesn't like me :) ). At the moment we have started the ESN LT Alumni club - also something we have never done before. Maybe this is the reason I am here - the reason of possibility to CREATE again. 

To sum up, I cannot imagine a day without ESN. There are still many things to do and many challenges to meet. Thank you all who have worked with me, thank you all who are still working - you are the best! 

ESN is the best place to be in!

by Julius Zaburas

More about ESN LT Alumni HERE.

ESN LT Alumni Facebook.

Only 3 days ago Eduk8 trainings were closed and participants headed back home. Luckily, this time ESN Lithuania had his own representative – Tomas Tamulevičius from ESN VMU, who agreed to share the moments of these days, which, according to him, were “one of the best weeks in my entire life”. 

Eduk8 is an international training project aiming to develop members of ESN while improving their skills and competences by professional trainers. Winter 2013 training invited to choose from three different, but ESN related topics: section empowerment, intercultural learning and management. From 1st to 4th of February, 2013 a bunch of ESNers gathered together in Valencia, Spain to deeper explore these topics.  

After Tomas promised to prepare a report about entire event, accomplished tasks and gained experience, which would serve for the future Human Resources Coordinators of ESN Lithuania, he remembered “all those precious moments, which will stay alive my entire life. These trainings united us all to one strong team, that it seemed that nothing is impossible for us. We were not representatives from different countries and sections – we were members of one family, which is called ESN”.

  

This event resulted not only as a huge motivation for the future challenges, but also as an unique opportunity to directly meet members of international ESN Committees, what made me think about joining one of them”.

Tomas also wanted to thank for all ESN network for the given opportunity to participate and experience on of the most beautiful weeks ever. Special thanks were expressed for ESN Lithuania, our NR Simona Patašiūtė and HRC Vydūnas Pakrijauskas for all the support and encouragement given. 

On the 18-20th of November delegation of 51 people moved from Vilnius straight away to the capital of Estonia where from the biggest adventure ever called ESN Sea Battle started. More than 2000 international students, 760 cabins, 3 dance floors and 2 harbors – experience worth attention of more than 40 ESN sections. ESN Lithuania was represented by ESN VMU, ESN KTU, ESN VGTU, ESN KK, ESN Vilnius University and ESN MRU Vilnius with the help of 3 amazing Group Leaders – Sandra Rimavičiūtė (ESN LT Project Coord.), Dovilė Žemaitytė (ESN KTU) and Simona Aršulytė (ESN VGTU).

According to Sandra, it was an amazing experience worth trying over and over again. Well organized various activities in the boat, active participants and of course amazing parties – that’s all you may want when going to the cruise like this. Despite of that, people got even more. It was Tallinn and Stockholm which were charming because of their historical surroundings and unique stories which were revealed by professional guides.

This time Sea Battle came back different. With new coordinator – Oscar Boije, new logo, lots of promotional material and even seek of feedback. From now on ESN Sea Battle means not only joyful time, but also a qualified project, which is worth attending. Spring is coming, so consider joining ESN Sea Battle 2013 Spring!

Ok ok ok ok ok do not panic… and again, what time is it? 9.45? Where are you all??? Lets check again, how much of time left? We suppose to leave in 15 minutes…!

That is how started an adventure called trip to St. Petersburg. Ten more minutes and people started to gather.. I (member of ESN KTU section) was organizing this trip and a mentor - Audrė from KK was helping me a lot. It took a few weeks to plan everything... So imagine how happy I felt afterwards… Nobody was late, everybody came, a great relief came to me.

People studying in KTU, KK and VMU universities who came to Lithuania from Turkey, Germany, Sweden, France, Poland, Spain, Austria, Portugal, Italy, Kazakhstan were ready to visit St. Petersburg and enjoy its beauty and oneness.

This is the day, the time and place. Now, hold on Russia, our gang is coming! We are going to be sooo wild and so furious! (10 min. later - everybody sleeps in the bus).

Well, I thought to myself, maybe we are not going to be so wild. But that is completely ok, we will take it leisurely, there is nothing wrong with that, maybe these guys just want to have some rest and peace but not parties and rave...

I have to admit, that it was a first and totally wrong impression of our crew, because just after a noon everybody started waking up, to eat, drink and talk. In brief, it was a habitual waking up time and activity for Erasmus students. Very fast, talks and chatters in the bus, going Kaunas – St. Petersburg, developed in to a massive and unstoppable feast with delicious drinks, foods and even dazzling camera lights, which as appeared later, was dazzling bus drivers so much ,that they even couldn’t see the road.

After a short bus stop for a brief moral education, we could move on towards the town called Narva where we had to spend a night and then, fresh as daisies, cross Russia border. And everything went this way, we didn’t even noticed as we were already going down the road towards the great and remarkable town – St. Petersburg. And indeed, St. Petersburg is amazing. Undoubtedly - one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Architecture, museums, people, everything is so different, exclusive and beautiful at the same time. St. Petersburg was founded by Tsar Peter the Great, that is why the most famous objects that we have visited was somehow related with this remarkable person or his relatives.

At first we went to see Peters and Pauls cathedral in which all the emperors and empresses of tsarist Russia are buried down. It is the first and oldest landmark in St. Petersburg which amazes you by its grandeur and abundance of affluance. Second, a very special place that we went to see was a Catherines summer palace, that personally for me, was the most amazing thing that I have seen in Russia so far. Its splendour, beauty and luxury made me rethink about those who had it and those who had to die because of it.

The last day in St. Petersburg started quite early by going to one of the world-wide known museums – Hermitage. Just imagine, what an extraordinary feeling you get when you go down those beautifull coridors, staircases and halls that used to be a homes for ones of the most famous historic personalities. Moreover, step after step you discover sculptures, paintings and other masterpieces of the artists such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Matisse, van Gogh and others... It is quite impossible to describe everything in words. I think the only way you can get visualize Hermitage is to go there and to see everything with your own eyes ...

After these adventures and spectacular views, tired but very happy, we headed towards Lithuania . I must say that because of a remarkable drivers skils, our way back to home did‘nt take a long time and was very decent.

And that my friends is the story about a trip to a land of great Russia whrere a city called St. Petersburg amazes everyones eyes who is lucky enought to see the beauty of its wealth.

Simona Puskunigytė

For 11-18 of November North-South Centre of the Council of Europe organizes “Global Education Week”.

This year Erasmus Student Network of Lithuania also joins this event providing the society information about the Erasmus exchange possibilities and its’ importance to the development of the global citizenship.

Here you can find short movie how ERASMUS, and exchange programs at all, can be benefitial for the person, local society and all the world! ;)

Attention: exchange students did a great job - explained everything in Lithuanian!!!

Thanks for all participants for educating our society!

Increase funding by 70% for the new Erasmus program!

ESN together with AEGEE and ESU invites you to support the idea to rise the funding for the following Erasmus program which will change current Erasmus program from 2014.

Needless to say that ESN believes that this increase is justified and we want to give more people the chance to be mobile and have the amazing experience that so many of us have already enjoyed.

How can You help?

Sign the petition

We need to get one million signatures from all European Union countries. So please promote this to all your international students, sign it yourself and make everyone you know sign it. What is more, the General Affairs Council is meeting on Tuesday, November 20 and the budget is discussed. We need to send a strong signal until then and get as many signatures as possible.

The budget of the new EU programme and the budget are only negotiated every seven years. So now is our chance to stand up for mobility and exchange. There will not come an equally good one any time soon.

So what do we plan to do?

There are two main things. To reach those we have joined forces with the other two big student organisations in Europe, AEGEE and ESU. Our two main goals are:

• To secure the funding of ESN International via operational support (currently through the Jean Monnet grant we have been receiving the past years);

• To secure the budget increase for mobility programmes such as the Erasmus programme.

Support the future of Erasmus and Exchange - Sign Fraternité 2020.

Attachment Files: 

• 2100+ international participants
• 760+ cabins
• 40 local ESN sections
• 6 ESN countries
• 5 DJ’s – 3 dance floors
• 5 restaurants – 3 shops
• 4 saunas – 2 pools
• 3 days – 2 nights
• 2 harbors
• 1 unforgettable event!
 
ESN Lithuania is happy having an opportunity to offer an opportunity for 48 exchange students from Lithuania to be convinced that this is one of the greatest party you may have! Places were shared according to an amount of exchange students studying in that university, which ESN section belongs to. Here are the numbers:
• ESN Vilnius University - 10 places,
• ESN VGTU - 10 places,
• ESN VMU - 6 places,
• ESN KTU - 6 places,
• ESN MRU Vilnius - 6 places,
• ESN KuK, ESN KK, ESN ISM, ESN ISLB, ESN ŠU gets 2 places per section.
 
!Some sections might not to fill up all of their places, free places will go to the people who will be in the waiting list according to their registration time!

Registration form >>HERE<<

DEADLINE to registrate - 21st of September, 23:59.
You have to give money to your section coordinator.
Deadline for sections to transfer money - 24th of September, 23:59.
 
Who is responsible in your section?
ESN VMU - Sandra Baltkojytė, [email protected];
ESN KTU - Justina Krauledaite, [email protected];
ESN KK - Modesta Džiaugytė, [email protected];
ESN VGTU - Simona Aršulytė, [email protected][email protected];
(more soon to come)
 
Participators must agree to the rules of the organizators. Every participator will have to sign a contract. Documents are attached below.

ESN Sea Battle 2012 Fall for exchange students from Baltics will be held on 18-20th of November.

Official event Facebook event HERE.

For more info contact your section or Sandra Baltkojyte, ESN Sea Battle national coordinator by email [email protected].

Sea you on the Boat! And traditionally... it's time to start learning the ESN Sea Battle Movement!

Annual General Meeting of ESN was just officially closed. While AGM Granada OC is still working on post-CNR delegations are slowly coming back home after one week of intense work, various decision making, researches of new partners and many other things. Yesterday the last part of Lithuanian has landed so finally we are all at home and now it is time to share skills we gained, things we experienced and news we were happy to get to know.

Officially AGM was opened at 22nd of March. It was the day then finally all Lithuanian delegation came together. Pink cloud or the so called bubble gum’s color was easily noticeable from everywhere. 10 girls (Ieva Vezbergaitė, ESN LT NR; Sandra Baltkojytė, ESN LT PR/ESN ISM; Simona Patašiūtė, ESN VGTU; Justina Krauledaitė, ESN KTU; Giedrė Gelšvartaitė, ESN KTU/ESN KuK; Kamilė Urbonavičiūtė, ESN KK; Brigita Tumakovaitė, ESN VU; Rusnė Malakauskaitė, ESN VMU; Toma Rimkevičiūtė, ESN ŠU and Viktorija Gurčinatė, ESN MRU Vilnius) represented Lithuania. This time delegation was dressed by personal clothes specially designed for AGM Granada’12 by Simona Patašiūtė (ESN VGTU President). This has helped our delegation to be seen every time and everywhere.

The opening day started then delegations met each other at registration, which was established at Hotel Nazaries***** lobby, the same hotel where our delegation has spent all those 4 nights and 5 days, everyone was invited to a city tour, which was guided by ESN volunteers and took only few hours that there would be enough time to prepare for the opening ceremony. Opening ceremony took place in a luxurious Theatre Isabel La Catolica, where about 400 people were welcomed in AGM Granada right after 10 years after the last AGM in Spain (AGM Lugo 2002). Warm words from IB by Tania, people from AGM OC and Spain education system delegates, videos dedicated to 25th anniversary of Erasmus program and a performance of the local music band playing with traditional instruments invited everyone to enjoy every moment being in Granada. After that participants were invited to have a dinner and later to continue the first day of AGM with Flag parade through the streets of beautiful Granada. From Hotel Nazaries to El Camborio with highly international atmosphere, but always with the colors of yellow, green and red, Lithuanian songs, flags and good mood we were happy to be a part of ESN. We were proud to be able to represent Lithuania – country, which might be a small one in Europe, but not in ESN, where our works are appreciated as other days have shown. So the first day finished in welcome party at El Camborio in front of shinning Alhambra’s castle – 8th miracle of the world. During the first day we have seen lots of things, but there were 3 more days to go.

Friday has invited to an info market, where our delegation has represented 6 different our universities offering a wide range programs of studies. Usually Lithuanian table welcomed people who were really interested in technical sciences more than social ones. Without offering opportunity to better get to know various universities of the Europe, AGM Informaket has invited to see the presentation of new ESN partner – NewYorker, which was offering opportunities to join their team, to use opportunities of internship and just simply discuss about the future perspectives of NewYorker and ESN. At the same time workshops were organized, where we better got to know techniques of decision making, future of Erasmus with Erasmus for All, to listen experiences of Alumnis or try to improve your visual design skills during an hour. After the dinner in the yard of the faculty of Sciences everyone gathered together for the first plenary session at this AGM, where the most exciting part was presentations of candidates to International Board. 3 potential presidents, 3 vice presidents, 3 communication managers, 2 web project administrators and 1 treasurer gave up their future vision of ESN. For more info about presentations contact us. After plenary who took far more than expected time for Eurodinner was coming. Here Lithuania presented their cuisine with white and other kinds of cheeses, candies as Fortūna and Miglė, our traditional TINGINYS. Some meat was provided as well just in usually unexpected forms for our international guests when they got to know that the thing they have just tasted is ear of pig or stomach of chicken. Some Lithuanian drinks were provided as well. That’s how already half of the AGM had passed away.

24th March, Saturday was full of serious information, presentations of the candidates for future international events. Candidacy for AGM 2013 was proposed by 3 different cities: Maribor in SLOVEnia, Vienna in Austria and Milan in Italy. CND 2012 had 3 options as well with candidacies of ESN Maleventum (Italy), ESN Orebro (Sweden) and ESN Valnecia UPV (Spain). ESN TU-Graz and ESN UNI-Graz (Graz, Austia) suggested organizing CEP 2012. At the same day results of previous Board was also presented, decisions about statutes and standing orders and much more. During all day spent under the roof in plenary session we have finally managed to accept some changes in statutes and to work out problems with voting devices that on Sunday the process of IB election would be fluent. This day ended not only with show of horses but also with a Spanish dinner where participants got opportunity to try out Spanish cuisine.

The last and the most important day of the AGM, 25th March, invited to listen about partners of ESN, reports about previous international events and finances we are disposing. Together with that presentation of ESN Alumni has happened as well when ESN Alumni project was elected. It was Erasmus Student Network Politechnika Warszawska (ESN PW / WUT) which got the award and since now they will have even better opportunities to improve their ideas. Without that participants heard about results of project Ride for your Rights, EduK8, ESN Survey, together with plans about future of ESN Card and all ESN, some ideas about corporate identity usage, but the most important part was voting this time. So there and then we have elected not what other soon countries will be filled up with ESN spirit, but also who will lead ESN in the future.

IB:

President - Emanuel Alfranseder (ESN Sweden);
Vice-president - Katharina Ma (ESN Austria);
Treasurer - Mario Alarcon (ESN Spain);
Communication Manager - Juan Colino (ESN Spain);
WPA - Fabian Bircher (ESN Switzerland).

International events for 2012/2013:

• AGM 2013 – ESN Maribor, ESN Slovenia.
• CND 2012 – ESN Örebro, ESN Sweden.
• CEP 2012 – Graz (ESN TU-Graz & ESN UNI-Graz), ESN Austria.
• NEP 2012 – Tallinn, ESN Estonia.
• SEEP 2012 – ESN Athens AUEB, ESN Greece.
• SWEP 2012 – Madrid, ESN Spain.
• WEP 2012 – was not elected.

Elections were over and the only thing what was left was beautiful Gala dinner, which took place in the restaurant of Hotel Nazaries*****. It was the time of beauty, suites and dresses and international ESN STAR awards as well. Best of the bests were announced and the results were amazingly shocking for ESN Lithuania which got an award for the STARproject (Cultural Nights by ESN VMU)!!! Other winners were:

ESN UJ Krakow - STARlight 2012
ESN Zagreb, Croatia - STARTer 2012;
Erasmus Student Network UKSW - webSTAR 2012;
ESN Greece - STARland 2012.

Time of AGM was ending, time for the first goodbyes came. But it’s only for the moment because many more international events are in front of us.

By Sandra Baltkojytė

On the 25-26th February, Gintarė Vaiginytė (President of ESN Lithuania) and Julija Garšvaitė (Project Coordinator of ESN Lithuania) attended the 13th National Platform of Estonia. On the first day, we found out a lot about the projects Tallinn and Tartu sections are organizing and participating in. We met the candidates for the next NR of Estonia and heard the presentation about ESN Italy projects and structure. Also all participants got the chance to find out more about “Let’s do it World” environmental project.

On the 26th February we presented ESN Lithuania, the projects we participate in and our structure. Afterwards we got a private tour in Tallinn by an ESNer from Tartu section.

P.S. Congratulations to Katre Trei – the next NR of ESN Estonia!!! 

More photos may be found here.

From the 19th to 23rd of January 40 people from 32 countries of ESN gathered in Trondheim, the second largest city in Norway (a.k.a. the Ice rink) for the Social Erasmus Coordinator Meeting (SECM).
 
First day everyone got a tour through the city and later had a relaxing dinner and an evening in a Norwegian sauna.  
 
During the second day, SE coordinators presented the SE projects of their countries. Each coordinator had the opportunity to learn about the projects each country is having and to get ideas for the new ones. After the plenaries, everyone got back to the hostel and got ready for Euro Dinner which took place in the city center. During Euro Dinner the participants shared their traditional dishes and had fun dancing and playing Limbo.
 
On the 21st January, the morning started with an open discussion about Social Erasmus projects, its concept and whether SE needs new pillars for the projects (such as cultural, health). Later the coordinators were divided into 3 groups. This day was dedicated for workshops about PR/Communication, Budget/Finansing and Project management. After the workshops, everyone gathered in the main room to have another discussion about SE projects and when the discussions ended, the participants were guided up on a mountain to the tallest building in Norway (rotating restaurant) for the dinner. After it everyone got back to the hostel just to prepare for a Masquerade party, where few nominations for a few distinguished people were given: Miss World, Mr. Universe, Nicest Bum, Best Hair, Best Dancer, Biggest Flirter, Funniest person, etc.
 
On the last day of the meeting, some people started to leave, but the others had another day of workshops, which have covered Teambuilding, Motivation and Event organization workshops. After these, there was a surprise for everyone - the Northern Lights in Trondheim were visible, so this made usual evening to be an extraordinary one! For dinner the OC provided everything from nowadays Norway cuisine – tacos, which now are probably the most popular dish in Norway. After dinner part of the participants went to play some Bowling, others stayed at the hostel.
 
On the 23rd January, most of the participants were already gone away, but the others, who still had a few hours in Trondheim, went for a city tour.
 
All in all, SECM was a very good experience for all SE Coordinators, because we have not only got an opportunity to find out about the projects other countries are making, but also we were encouraged to learn some new useful things during the workshops.
 
More photos may be found here.

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