1. What does ESN mean to you?
The thing that makes the ESN, no matter how well we work, is the people. The ones who are very peculiar in everyone else’s eyes, often weird and not understood. I believe them to be interesting, brave and unique. They create our organization. Their ideas are the start to all the most innovative projects which change contemporary Europe.
2. How did your ESN adventure start?
I joined ESN in 2015. Firstly, I applied to be a part of the Mentor (buddy) programme and became a mentor of two Spanish students. Soon enough, I learned that many of their friends also needed help. By the end of semester, I ended up helping many new people. I went on my first ever Section Meeting in Budapest (cooperation between ESN Budapest United and ESN Vienna) four days after the integration camp ended. It was my first, very spontaneous trip abroad with friends. I didn’t expect anything, but ever since Budapest remained one of my favourite places in Europe. After that, I decided to be a Mentor Programme Coordinator, then Orientation Week Coordinator, then Mentor Programme Coordinator once again. In the meantime, I was organizing traineeships in my local section, I joined the HR Committee of ESN Poland and became one of “the Hateful Eight” during ESNOLYMPICS.
3. How did ESN change your life? Why have you joined it?
This student organization turned my life upside down. For the first time in my life, I was motivated enough to try make my dreams come true and don’t give up on anything. Despite all my problems connected with studies and many other things I got the chance to travel the world. I met the people that I wanted to travel and explore with. I gained new skills. I got the job. Before joining ESN, I wasn’t expecting anything. There are two reasons why people recruit to ESN. They either want to practice English, or they have just finished their Erasmus+ exchange. I joined to learn English and meet as may foreign students as possible.
4. If you were an ESN project, what would you be?
It would probably be Eduk8. This is a project which I’ve followed for a very long time. It is about developing the organization by investing time and its resources in the members. I strongly believe that the people are our greatest power and I am proud to say that the foundation of the national strategy is their own development.
5. #FunFact about a life in ESN.
Fellow ESN members think of me as either sick or broke.
6. Have you gone on the Erasmus+ exchange? What is the most interesting experience you've had so far?
I have never been on Erasmus.
7. What inspires and motivates you the most?
Talking with people. My friends are my source of inspiration and motivation. Thanks to them I have an opportunity to be creative. I believe that we can all do that. And that is why I love brainstorming with flipcharts and tones of colour pencils… Then I feel alive and ready for all the new challenges and teamwork.
8. Favourite place in the world?
I love all markets, filled with people places with fresh food, scents and colours.
9. Did ESN help you discover some things you didn’t know you were good at?
ESN is a place where we can develop while feeling safe. It has shown me that even the biggest weakness can be converted into strength. I have gained strategic managing skills. I’ve learned how to give public speeches. I’ve even proven myself to be a great trainer.